About the Artist
Heather Cole Gatto is driven by a passion to express her vision of life through art. For the first twenty-six years of her life, Heather explored this vision through a variety of media, including drawing, painting, writing, and clay sculpture. During six years of world travel, this vision expanded on the pages of myriad journals where artistic interpretations were logged. She explored Southeast Asia, India, Nepal, Europe, the Middle East and Latin America. Throughout, she found that her gift for portraiture could help her overcome language barriers and connect her to cultures. These deep connections with global peoples and their countries are captured in the figurative sculptures she creates today.
The turning point in Heather's artistic journey occurred in 1997 in a small village in central Italy when she first experienced stone sculpting. Having found her calling, she dedicated her life to its path. Heather continued to sculpt during the remainder of her stay in Italy, and upon her return to the United States, she completed a one-year apprenticeship with a Seattle-based sculptor.
In 1999 Heather held her first sculpting exhibition in Seattle and she also did freelance commission work sculpting for a variety of companies, including Sony and the Seattle Science Center. While these experiences enhanced her technical repertoire, Heather was drawn to develop her own creative vision, which was realized when she moved to Port Townsend, Washington for two years. There, she dedicated herself to a non-stop study of stone and sculpting. While there she set up her own studio to explore the tools and techniques of her art, experiment with different stone, and attend weekly figure drawing sessions. During that period of exploration, Heather joined the Northwest Stone Sculptors Association uniting with a broad network of sculptors and entering into a valuable professional dialogue. Most importantly, Heather developed and gained faith in her inner vision, giving it expression through her unique sculptures.
In 2000 Heather relocated to become a part of a larger art community in Seattle. For five years she worked full-time in a sculpting studio with other talented artists and her work has been displayed in both public parks and private galleries. Then in 2006, the season for Port Townsend returned beckoning Heather into its creative womb. There she has been cultivating a new and deeper voice within her life and her art. Through the use of cast hydrostone and ceramics Heather has begun to explore new and exciting ways to speak her language.
To the benefit of her art Heather has dedicated herself to a daily discipline of yoga. She finds that yoga has enhanced a deeper understanding of the human form, which in turn, has enriched and found expression in her work. In 2004, Heather connected with her Guru from India, Amma, Mata Amritanandamayi. In this same year she also began an ongoing mentorship with a Seattle based medicine women, Char Sundust, whose guidance has lead her into a deep knowing of herself and the world. Through the assistance of these two powerful and beautiful beings, Heathers life and art dramatically changed in many magical and miraculous ways. In November of 2007 Heather married Angelo Gatto which plunged her even deeper into a life of love. In March of 2010 Heather cocreated her greatest creation of love ever, her beautiful daughter Satya Stamatina Gatto. Satya is one of Heathers' greatest teachers and her work once again changes and deepens from the wonderful mirror of life around her.