“Windsong” (Eagle), 2000 by Rebecca Tobey bronze sculpture with etched design, metal stand 14 1/4” tall x 7” wide x 5” deep
Rebecca was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan and spent most of her childhood in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. She graduated from New York’s Adelphi University in 1972 with a master’s degree in theater arts. One of Rebecca’s first jobs after graduate school was designing classroom learning environments for a United States Department of Education Training Institute on Long Island, New York.
In September of 1975, Rebecca visited Santa Fe, New Mexico to attend Fiesta. She felt and instant connection to the city, saying, "It was as if I had finally ‘come home.’" She returned to New York, broke her lease, quit her job and moved to Santa Fe by December.
In 1984, Rebecca met sculptor Gene Tobey while working as a director of a Santa Fe art gallery that featured Gene’s raku pottery. Following their marriage in 1985, Rebecca and Gene began developing brightly colored ceramic sculptures, which had evolved from dishes and practical ceramics to stylized animals.
Over the years, Rebecca’s sculptures were characterized by a spiritual intensity and a style that was both sophisticated and primal. The work appeared as sleek silhouettes from afar, but when viewed up close revealed a maze of glyphs and symbols. The sgraffito drawings often portrayed other animals, mountain ranges, human figures, symbols and geometric shapes.