Sculptor Ruth Stanford began her career studying butterfly courtship behavior and protecting cave-dwelling beetles and other invertebrates as an endangered species ecologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Central Texas. With a scientist’s curiosity and keen observation skills, she now specializes in installation and site-specific sculpture, choosing particular media in service to concept.
Stanford’s work draws on personal reflection to create broader metaphors relevant to the world at large. Much of her work explores history and notions of presence/absence, permanence/impermanence, fiction/reality, and conscious/unconscious. Often it relies on the language, ideas, and tools of science.
An associate professor of sculpture at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Stanford received an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and a BFA from the University of Texas at Austin. Her zoology degrees are from UT Austin (BS) and Arizona State University (MS). Before joining the Georgia State faculty in 2005, she served as an adjunct professor at Pittsburgh’s Chatham College, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of St. Francis in Joliet, IL. Her work has appeared in museums and galleries including the National Art Gallery Zambia; the inaugural exhibition of the Zuckerman Museum of Art in Kennesaw, GA; Agnes Scott College in Atlanta; Saratoga Art Center in Saratoga Springs, NY; William and Mary University in Williamsburg, VA; and the Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh, PA.
An avid bird watcher and history nerd, she can lasso a lizard with dental floss, a skill she learned as an undergraduate science major. She has a particular affinity for Cardigan Welsh corgis, weight lifting, bicycles, and dead people.