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Judith Sivonda

judith-photo.jpgWhen Judith Sivonda made a trip to the Blue Ridge three years ago to visit the only soapstone quarry currently operating in the US, she knew she had the “Green option” she had been looking for in her quest for soapstone. Most soapstone purchased in the US and Canada is actually quarried in Brazil and exported to Ontario before being transported to the eastern US.  But this dark gray stone was uniquely Virginia and became a new favorite when it was added to her supply of alabasters from Colorado and Utah, Indiana limestone and varied marble.

Judith is an instructor at the Clifton Forge School of the Arts and maintains a classroom/studio in the historic Wholesale Grocers building owned by the school.  She says she started casting and carving in plaster more than 45 years ago. She studied stone carving as an undergraduate at Hartford Art School, (Connecticut).  She retired from the New Haven public schools, where she was an art teacher, in 2009. She and husband, Stephen, attracted by the natural beauty of the mountains and streams, moved south to the Alleghany Highlands.