Virginia Sperry grew up in a house full of art, music, dance and theater. A bachelor’s degree in theater, a year dancing at the Martha Graham School in NYC and a master’s degree in dance therapy preceded Virginia’s visual arts career. Her first foray into the sculpture world started with polymer clay in 1990. Taking advantage of the malleability of the medium, she taught herself to weave colorful baskets and make miniature life-like animal sculptures and furniture. Virginia exhibited these works in multiple craft shows, including the ACC show in Baltimore, from 1990 to 2003. During this time she owned and operated Winter Moon Designs, a contemporary craft and art gallery located in Ellicott City, MD.
In 2003 Virginia learned to weld in a metal fabrication class at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). Initially assuming that steel is strong and difficult to manipulate, she soon found that she could create fluid sculptures using this material. Trained in observing the movement of living creatures and feeling a deep connection with the animal world, Virginia created amazingly life-like bears, giraffes and other beasts. From 2005 to 2014 these animals were installed in several cities around the country, including Sioux Falls, SD, Eau Claire, WI, and Castlegar, BC. Her Great Blue Heron was installed in Piney Run Park in March of 2018 which was a commission for the Carroll County (MD) Arts Council and the Parks and Recreation Department.
In addition to making her animal sculptures, Virginia is experimenting with using rust as a medium and making woven forms from rusty metal and fibers. She also spends time with her camera, taking abstract photographs of steel, rust and paint. Virginia’s sculptures and photographs speak to themes of aging and impermanence both in her own life and in the world around her.
A residency at the School of Visual Arts in NYC in 2015 opened up the world of art installations for Virginia. This led to mixed media sculptural installations in various places such as the Horowitz Center for the Arts at Howard County Community College, libraries in Carroll and Howard County, and at Maryland Art Place in Baltimore.
Recently her photographic work has taken her back into the studio to explore the different materials that she works with. Her explorations have led her to tell stories with these various media.
Virginia lives and works on a six-acre farm outside of Baltimore, MD with her husband, one dog and two cats. Many of her larger sculptures are scattered around her property, which is open to the community for public viewing twice a year. When not getting messy in the studio, Virginia can be found gardening, hiking, reading or traveling around the world in search of new experiences.