Born in Carmel, California Paige Bradley knew she would be an artist by the age of nine. Immersed in nature and art, Bradley's fascination with the human figure began early. She believed that through the figure an artist could speak a universal language that is timeless and essential. Paige Bradley started drawing from the nude model by the age of ten and by fifteen was studying intensely at university campuses during the summer months. Knowing that she was naturally a sculptor, at seventeen she cast her first bronze sculpture.
Educated at Pepperdine University, Paige spent a year in Florence, Italy with the university's study program. There she took classes at the Florence Academy of Art which included art history. She went on to continue her education at the prestigious Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, where she studied sculpture and learned to paint and print in several different mediums.
In 1995 she was assistant sculptor on a monument for the Atlanta Olympic Games. In 2001 she was voted into the National Sculpture Society, the Catherine Lorillard Wolfe Art Club and The Salmagundi Club as a professional sculptor. In 2006 one of her sculptures was selected to become a prestigious international award for young dancers. A replica of the sculpture is now awarded to a talented dancer selected by a panel of judges annually from Ballet International.
Annually, Paige Bradley has several solo exhibitions, and her work can be seen in selected galleries throughout the world. In 2004 she moved her studio from California to New York City. In the spring of 2007 she moved to London, where she currently works full time.
Paige's work is full of dichotomies: both the beautiful and the ugly, the liberated and the contained, the falling and the floating. She is always in control of form but not imprisoned by its literality. The subject matter becomes the most important -- not narrowly feminist, but rather humanistic betrayals of modern emotion. Paige's work is becoming a valuable keystone for the missing figure in contemporary art. Only in her early thirties, Paige Bradley's talent and artistic achievements have already gained her much notoriety.
The Artist's Statement
Focusing on tensions and liberations in my work, I feel most of our emotions are locked into an existential cocoon. My sculptures show the human race as a singular individual searching for connection but finding only alienation. My recent work has become a symbol of struggle -- both being contained and liberating ourselves from
self-inflicted boundaries. Fears of ostracism, avoiding distinction and hiding from greatness are all thoughts that come to mind. These fears create sculptures wrapped in extraordinary tension. The figures struggle to unveil themselves in order to become understood and known. These bound figures give me a sense of unrest as if too much life is jammed into too restrictive of space. I feel as if I am trying to live my truth free and unveiled in a society that would rather keep us contained.
From the moment we are born, the world tends to have a container already built for us to fit inside: a social security number, a gender, a race, a profession, an I.Q. I ponder if we are more defined by the container we are in than what we are inside. Would we recognize ourselves if we could expand beyond our bodies?
Would we still be able to exist if we are authentically "un-contained"?
I attempt to expand my sculptures beyond the human flesh of the figure and create the brilliance within us. Simultaneously, I cannot help but to see a dangerous dichotomy between falling apart and expanding beyond our limitations. When devastation becomes deliverance, ashes from the past can become the foundations of the future.