Doctor di Peste-Plague Doctor

Reflect the plague-Reflect the fear-Reflect the death
I have not succumbed.  My reasoning comes in bits and pieces.
I was born on Burano.  My entire island was condemned for the Plague- I will never forget approaching the boat as my grandmother handed me a package through the means of a long stick.  “Burn the outer package.  The rest has not been touched”, she cried, and sank back into the burning island along with the rest of my family and hoards of victims.
Rowing to Murano I thought of family I had just left in the billowing inferno.  I was so sad.  I was angry.  I felt helpless.  I met an American glass artist Teal Rowe.  Her Italian was broken and I think she had trouble understanding me through my terror yet she kept insisting it was because of the Burano dialect.  She was working on making beads “mille fiore” (millions of flowers), she had bright colors, she listened to my sadness understanding my grief.  I used the fire of her torch to burn the wrapping of the package my grandmother had given me.  Inside a metal box was the lace my grandmother had created with her own hands.  Not touched by the plague.  Touched by grandmother.  Each thread had been spun, each knot wrapped by the tips of her smooth delicate fingers.  I was delighted to have these strips of lace, these memories of my roots in Burano.  The dark reflections of what affect this disease had on my family became brighter.  Through the time and colors I realized I wanted to go to Venice.  Upon departure Teal gave me a silk bag, “Open this later”, and walked away.  I could not wait.  I stopped rowing long enough to untie the satin cord and peek into the beautiful mille fiore beads that had absorbed all of the horrendous visions of my experiences.  She had given me these bright reflections.
I was a stranger to this huge city of Venice.  I decided to focus on one thing.  I studied, I dug deep into the history of the plague, into darkness, into the terror of societies, animals, families, and individuals.  I became a doctor.  Doctor di Peste.  I reflect the plague.  I reflect the fear.  I reflect death.
I am a reflection of brightness.

Hello Everyone!
I want to give you the “heads up” that I am heading to Corning, NY.
I will be teaching glassblowing/sculpting at the 
Corning Museum of Glass

My showroom in Ojai will be open by appointment (805-646-4605) until April 16.
I have many earrings, solid core sculpture, and blown pieces.
I wanted to put this out especially to the people I think are wanting a piece, but putting it off…..

If you want the paintbrushes or earrings they are well stocked by Karin at  Calais & Co
212-B E. Ojai Ave.

After April 16 my favorite form of communication will be e-mail…pictures on this blog and you can always see me on facebook.

I thank you for every single word, thought, and action of support you have given me along the way.  I am really looking forward to this next step.
Best to you,

Hello Everyone!
I am happy to invite you to come to the Ojai Museum this Sunday from 12-4 when I and the other glass artists in the show will be selling work.  

A Bazar!

This is an indoor event…so Rain!

I will have earrings, brushes, and my latest in solid core sculpture available.  
A portion of sales will benefit our museum.

Hope to see you there!
And I thank you for all of your support for the last 18 years that I have been working with glass.


P.S.  The Glass Show will be up in museum until April 1…..a great opportunity to see the show too.  I love this show!  Glass in our Ojai Valley- don’t miss it!


I dream a lot and often wake to the experience of wondering if a dream is real.

I woke thinking I was in a dream as a horse ran wildly.   Hoof beats on the hard dirt and gravel road echoed off of the hillside. Crazy neighs I thought it were in my head.  It seemed it had to be a dream until I sat up in bed and realized my senses were in tact.

Escaped, running back and forth, reverberating hoof sounds and squealing in and out of range.  I could not ignore the spirit of this real live horse running itself ragged out on the road.

As my adrenaline pushed me out of bed to put on my boots I felt sure about going out to help this horse calm down.  I didn’t have a plan.  It was as if the spirit of the horse called me out there into the dark warm night in my boots with a rope in hand.  For some reason the fear that I used to feel as a kid on my own horse, who happened to be a bit wild, just wasn’t there.  It was “all systems go” to help this creature.

I set off down the road still hearing the disturbed calls.  Getting closer I could now hear the horses winded breath in between it’s calls.  And there on the hill stood the silhouetted beauty of this spirited creature.  I saw it, it saw me at the same time.  In the moment that we startled each other I put out my arm and the horse came running.  

It seemed so relieved to see me.   As I sensed it’s moist inhale in my hand, a flood of fear washed through my body.  It seemed that the hugeness of this animal devoured my courage.  It was as if the primal fear that I wanted to calm in it was transferred into me with it’s one breath in my palm.  

Any idea of capturing the horse and preventing its running wild had flushed out with the flood of fear.  I told the horse that I would find it’s owner and turned back to the house to phone.  

I did not paint this.

Just this last week, I ran into a friend of the owner of this horse.  He said they had to put it down.  “On Friday the thirteenth.”  

The owner was saddling up while the horse got out from under the saddle.  It ran off spooking from the saddle it was pulling behind itself.  The horse fell off the cliff and was physically hurt beyond saving.

I feel sad for the loss of this life.

Me and the Glass Dress

Show is up at the Ojai Museum Until April 1.   Worth seeing….all that glass in our little town!

Altar Making Workshop 
December 17 & 18 Saturday and Sunday
10:00 am to 3:00 pm in Ojai

Want to set an intention in health, relationship, career, finance, home, or more for the future?
Want to commemorate a person, event, pet, or more from the past?

I will guide you by helping combine your intention with your creativity into the making of an altar.  And….yes, you ARE creative!

I have many materials for you to use, as well as bring your own objects, symbols, ideas….and through a shared artistic experience you will create
your own meaningful piece of art.

$225.00 includes home made vegetarian lunch- 
5 spaces left.  
Let me know.

If not now, when?

Thank you to EVERYONE who made The Massive Annual Holiday Sale a complete success……I really appreciate all of your appreciation of my work.  It is always so wonderful to come out of the artist isolation tank and see your beautiful faces and hear your beautiful voices……

Mom doing the drawing!

The rain troopers

Mom, Dianne Bennett Engle, Chris Engle……The people that are used to the weather of the north…..Freezing inside the house.

Looking forward to seeing everyone’s beautiful face here:  

And if you can’t read this tiny writing… me at and I will send you a version that you CAN read.  I will also enter your name into a drawing for a spectacular piece that I will pick on Sunday Nov. 20 @ 4:00.