Cher Shaffer was born in rural Atlanta, Georgia, on a small farm. This rural Georgia setting became an important part of Cher's self, as her Native American mother taught her about the values of nature. An additional Native American teaching from her intuitive mother included a value for the world of dreams. Cher's German father, a direct descendant of Martin Luther, was a staunch Baptist and provided her with a deep respect for her creator and appreciation for the spiritual side of life. This unique and diverse upbringing resulted in Cher being a true and natural visionary, with her creations being guided by ancestral memory, beliefs and expectations. Cher's creations communicate her hopes, fears, and emotions.
Cher's works evolved to include fantasy interpretations with strong electric colors and expressive and meaningful characters.
Cher experienced heart failure in 1985. This resulted in her work beginning to explore death and mortality, emerging from a "primal level" created from her very core. Ghostly images began to haunt her. Her sense of responsibility for what she would leave behind grew stronger.
Millard and Ramona Lampell described Cher in this following quote from "O,APPALACHIA: Artists of the Southern Mountains." "She is a painter, wood carver, sculptor, and a maker of haunting figures created from pottery, cloth, human hair, wood, seeds, shells, claws, fur, and feathers. She is a practical down-to-earth mother, a rebel, a mystic, a dreamer, a one woman magic show."
Cher's career as an artist is highlighted by many accomplishments, with her work being recognized both nationally and internationally. Cher's exhibitions and shows are too numerous to list, but include "Paradise Lost and Found" at Portsmouth Museum in Portsmouth, Virginia, at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado and at Owensboro Museum of Art, Owensboro, Kentucky, along with "Ghost Dance," at Parkersburg Art Center, Parkersburg, West Virginia. Additionally, Cher's work is represented in private and public collections including that of Whoopie Goldberg, Jane Fonda, Richard Dreyfus, Rob Reiner, Henry Winkler and one of her most appreciated, fellow artist Thornton Dial.
© 2011 Jones Fine Art