The Arabian horse community is made up of a diverse populace; with one treasured group of this community being our Artists.
Laurie Bielik is a multi-talented creator of beautiful artwork, and jewelry, featuring the Arabian horse. She works across mediums producing paintings and sketches, sculpture and wearable art. Her attention to detail and unique ability to capture the essence and emotion of her subjects has allowed her to successfully portray many beloved horses. Laurie's store provides something for everyone with custom pieces of varying sizes and types that start in a truly affordable price range.
(Emma) Tell us a little about yourself, and what you do?
(Laurie) I'm basically one of those horse crazy kids, all grown up and I have countless reasons I am grateful for the Arabian horses. Over forty-five years ago, my best friend’s father owned an Arabian horse farm and within minutes of my first visit to the nearly eighty horses, I knew this breed would be part of my life - for the rest of my life. I quickly learned to be dedicated to everything from breeding management to training and showing and I was so fortunate to be able to be part of everything...from scrubbing down foaling stalls to showing some of the youngsters and stallions. Through the Arabian horses, I've made lifelong friends and met some of the most amazing fellow horsemen and women. I'm dedicated to the Assisi Ranch Sanctuary in Thousand Palms, Cali., where we take in horses who have nowhere else to go. Currently have 38 horses and each is here for the rest of their days.
I began sculpting 29 years ago when my daughter was born and I had decided to scale back on teaching and training. I developed Multiple Sclerosis in the late ‘90s and since 2006 it has ended my training and showing. The silver lining of this for me is I've found much quiet time to simply observe, learn from and be with the horses as well explore and develop different techniques for sculpting. I remember seeing several sculptures years ago at one of the major shows and fell in love with the idea of being able to create pieces for people whether they were budgeting for a bronze portrait or would like just a little something special. Making pieces in porcelain, clay, bronze and silver allows me to offer a wide variety of sculptures- from miniatures as jewelry, Christmas and wall ornaments, home décor, and up to life size pieces.
The different mediums lend themselves to highly accurate and detailed sculptures or to looser, impressionistic pieces. Each original begins with a feeling I get from a particular horse and often I do quick sketches on paper or a small, simple sculpt before beginning the final piece. Often, I will make a mold of the originals and then each sequential piece will be modified slightly during the finishing processes. Currently I'm busy with a couple of private bronze commissions and I am exploring another new, exciting medium to produce larger, highly textured pieces. I'm continually adding content and making changes to my website.
(Emma) What makes the Arabian horse a great subject?
(Laurie) Ah, the Arabian horse is living art. The curves, the angles, and the composition we call conformation. Their expressiveness, their inquisitive and intelligent minds and the fine smooth skin are all sparks of an idea for me. They are beautiful when they are simply grazing, they are breathtaking when they are showing themselves with each ounce of their energy. Arabian horses have introduced me to many emotions. From joy and wonder to tenderness and introspect. I've seen them bring joy and healing to people who have been through some very challenging circumstances in their lives and I've seen them excite and inspire the most stoic newcomers. To think of them is living in a dream. To sculpt them is an honor and a passion.
(Emma) Do you have a favorite piece?
(Laurie) I don't have a favorite piece I've done. All have had their own challenges and all were inspired by specific horses and emotions.
More information about Laurie, and her work, can be found on her webpage, http://www.originalhorse.com