Martha Posner

An Untamed Place

Martha Posner

Martha Posner believes in magic. She’s not kidding. And she wants those who see her sculpture “An Untamed Place” to believe in it too.

“I believe in magic. Period. I’m not being metaphoric,” Posner says. “When I was a kid my mother sewed beautifully and I used to have her make me capes.  I was the kid who jumped off the roof — I didn’t get hurt — but believed I could fly. And I hate to tell you but I still believe it on the right windy days.”

An Untamed Place, located at the base of College Hill along the Bushkill, is a “bed” made out of soil and grass and a wooden frame. The “quilt” and “pillows” are created from moss and wild violets. From the branch posts of the bed grows a canopy of blooming honey suckle sprinkled with crystals that shimmer at dusk to simulate a supernatural aura.

An Untamed Place (Photo by George Panichas)

Posner hopes those who come upon it are surprised and it takes them back to the imagination of their childhood. “I just want them to go back to a place when fairytales seem like a possibility,’’ she says.

The organic bed is named for Pan, the god of untamed places. The sculpture is how she imagined Tatiana’s lair from “A Midsummer’s Night Dream” might feel.

Her Untamed Place is comparable in size to “The Red Bed” which Posner installed at the Allentown Art Museum in 2002 as part of an exhibition called “Physical Memory.” A photo of the installation and some of her other artwork can be seen at Her work has been exhibited in galleries around the United States and as far away as Argentina.

Posner said it took about 11 months to make “The Red Bed” out of woven red garments from friends, wire, foamwood, honeysuckle vines, synthetic and real hair and tree branches. It was a hit and since then she’s wanted to make a living “Bed” outdoors.

Posner lives on an old homestead in the middle of 250 acres of forest in Martins Creek, where, she says, it’s easier to believe in magic.

An Untamed Place Gallery

Find An Untamed Place at map location 12

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