Mandie Lucas

Mixed Media / Ventress, LA / Master Craftsman

Artist Statement

I work with various textiles and fibers, found or purchased materials and dried herbs to create my cloth sculptures I call “Bayou Souls”. A native of Louisiana, the bayous and waterways are my favorite spots. I love the people and the stories they love to tell. Louisiana is a gumbo of ideas, personalities, stories, songs and traditions that provide a rich palette. Some of my souls are accompanied by original tales, giving me, as an amateur writer, a chance to provide a background to the sculpture. While they are not truly voodoo dolls, Bayou Souls come from the same tradition.
The sculptures are created from my own drawings and imagination, but I do background research when it is a historical or folkloric caricature. More often than not, the figure I set out to create takes on a life of it’s own and guides me to a totally different expression than originally planned. Each soul is a journey and I think my Work expresses that.


From a young age, I have been fascinated with the construction of textile figures. From suturing stuffed animals to making costumes out of facial tissues, I taught myself how to sew. With school, career and family, I wasn’t able to pursue my fascination with textile work. After l I had been practicing law for almost 10 years, I learned to quilt and that opened a whole new world. Through traditional quilting methods, I learned the technical skills I needed to make the non-traditional quilts I love. The nature of the legal profession has allowed me to get to know a lot of the people of Louisiana, sometimes in the most absurd situations. This combined with my love of history and stories began my creation of fabric sculptures depicting those special souls, real and imaginary, whom I have been blessed to know. Since becoming a Louisiana Craft Guild member, I have achieved Master Craftsman status. I have been privileged to show my work at the Alexandria Museum of Art, New Orleans Craft Gallery, Louisiana State Museum Wendell Williams, the Orville Hanchey Gallery and the International Quilt Festival.