Donna Naven’s fascinating connection with stone began in 2003. In this time, she has become a self-taught, master. Her stone art has appeared in numerous galleries, shows, festivals and exhibits and has found new homes as far away as Paris, London and Florida.
The mythological and archetypal representations that Donna is best known for emerge from marble, snowflake porphyry, limestone with fossils and stones that she finds on beaches, along rivers and in local quarries. Each figurine matches the stone type so well, as if it had been living within the stone all along.
Her inspiration is sourced in the Neolithic period, the last period of the Stone Age—simplicity at its best. Each wondrous carving reflects this inspiration. Anima-type characteristics materialize and reveal the stone’s recognizable spirit.
Like her Neolithic ancestors, Donna experiences the stone becoming warm and malleable as though waking up or coming alive. Although she applies the tools, Donna senses that the carving emerges from the direct flow between her and the stone. Even after a decade of developing her craft, she still marvels at the magic of discovery.
Donna then imbues each figure with hints of humour and playfulness so that the beholder experiences a heart connection. She often adds copper for the eyes, cedar, shell or other stones or stone figurines to complete a piece. The minimalistic effect is combined with an awe-inspiring magnificence.
Donna has a deep appreciation for the strength and presence of stone. Because of its great permanence as an art medium, she relates to stone with a profound respect. She gets a thrill at the thought of tossing one of her stone carvings into the ocean and, hundreds of years later, someone finding it among the rocks. That kind of permanence has both a long history and long future—something Donna thinks about each time a piece finds a new home in the world.