About the Artist
Photo by @mellorama
Monica "Moni" Johanna Roxburgh Sears is a lifelong creator of art. At ten years old in New Zealand she assembled her first masks from paper and cardboard. In 1987 her family relocated to the United States, and in 1994 she started making masks from paper mache and from carved foam, creating pieces for several theatrical performances.
In 1999 Moni moved to Portland, Oregon where she proceeded to turn mask-making into a business, Goblin Art. Often assisted by her partner Rick Sears, from 2000-2016 thousands of their creations were sold to customers around the world through galleries, fairs, art markets, and online sales. Additionally a number of their masks were commissioned for film and television series, and were featured on book and record album covers.
In 2017 Moni took a break from Goblin Art to create the Wildland Roots Project, through which she developed and workshoped several methods of mask-making using entirely natural and biodegradable materials, with classes typically held in outdoor, natural locations.
During the Pandemic, Moni co-founded the All Souls River Procession, held each November since 2021 by the Willamette River and St Johns Bridge in Portland. It combines art, masks, costumes, lanterns, processional puppets and group participation into a powerful community ritual to honor the souls who have left us during the previous year.
Then in 2023, Moni decided to reopen the Goblin Art studio, but this time to bring many of her creative interests together--mask-making, prop-building, processional puppets and community art projects, using a combination of both modern and natural techniques and materials. She also plans to offer a limited number of masks from various materials for purchase starting in Spring 2024.
The correct pronunciation of Moni is MON-ie or Maunee.