Lis-el Crowley, Guild Founder
1951 - 2020
Remembrances of Lis-el, shared by Guild members
Evelyn Pelati Dombkowski:
I'd like to share a poem, in memory of Lis-el. I will let Maya Angelou say it for me.
When Great Trees Fall
By Maya Angelou
When great trees fall,
rocks on distant hills shudder,
lions hunker down
in tall grasses,
and even elephants
lumber after safety.
When great trees fall
small things recoil into silence,
eroded beyond fear.
When great souls die,
the air around us becomes
light, rare, sterile.
We breathe, briefly.
Our eyes, briefly,
a hurtful clarity.
Our memory, suddenly sharpened,
gnaws on kind words
Great souls die and
our reality, bound to
them, takes leave of us.
dependent upon their
now shrink, wizened.
Our minds, formed
and informed by their
We are not so much maddened
as reduced to the unutterable ignorance
of dark, cold
And when great souls die,
after a period peace blooms,
slowly and always
irregularly. Spaces fill
with a kind of
soothing electric vibration.
Our senses, restored, never
to be the same, whisper to us.
They existed. They existed.
We can be. Be and be
better. For they existed.
What sad news, a beautiful life gone too soon. Her spirit lives on in this beautiful community of creative people. I am forever grateful for her labor of love in the Mojo conferences.
Too many memories flooding in right now of my sweet “master”.
We are all so blessed to have had such a beautiful person in our lives!
My sympathies go out to all of you and hopefully we can meet up soon.
Heaven now has their “Queen Angel” and I’m sure she’s getting everyone in order!
Love her so much and I will miss her daily.
Almost all of my metal clay tools, pieces, art on walls, etc... started with Lisel.
Every time I roll a snake she is whispering in my ear!
RIP Master-love Grasshopper
Love to all of you
So, so sad. Thank you for your thoughtful email. She was a wonderful force and I admired her so much. She gave me my first class and told me I had a natural talent. She probably said that to everyone but I will always cherish that and all my memories of Lis-el. God rest her soul. ❤
I am so lucky that Li-sel was in my life for many years at Wesleyan Potters and then the Metal Clay Guild. I am so grateful and awestruck by her presence on this earth and she will live on in my heart and creative energy forever. I hope we can all meet again in person soon.❤️
Respect...Friend...Love....The gifts Lis-el bestowed on all who passed through her realm are immeasurable. The light and positivity of her very being were a gift that will be treasured and held close. She demonstrated grace and acceptance to all. Her time on this plane was way too short but her impact will remain and continue to flourish with the love she shared as well as the knowledge she so willingly imparted to all. Being just one of many who were able to be blessed by Lis-el's spirit I will continue my journey through my life as an individual as well as a creator with Lis-el in my heart. Blessed be.
The world lost an amazingly creative and generous soul, someone who made such an impact on me and many metal clay artists around the world. I was so thankful she lived nearby and I could be a part of her guild. She taught me a lot, and I could always count on her being honest with me.
She was a trailblazer, down to earth, funny, a master of creativity, and she cared deeply and passionately... about her family, friends, students, and the metal clay community. She had big dreams, and followed them with all her heart! She achieved more in her lifetime than most of us only dream of. The world was a better place with her, and her legacy will live on. Laura R
The Metal Clay Artisans Guild of CT came together as a small group of artists eager to learn. Lisel began meeting with a few artists and her efforts had grown to incorporate Mojo conferences, guild retreats, workshops, and gallery events. Lis-el continually developed new ideas and techniques. Our guild, shaped by Lisel’s unique talents and generous spirit will miss our “queen” and friend.
Lis-el had many "lives", meaning in her past she was immersed in a few different lifestyles and avenues. And I always noticed how bright she was and she was a very "quick study". So in other words she took in all these varied experiences and relationships and learned from them all. And the Guild, the Mojo Conference, even AMCAW where all distilled from all these different things she had seen. But always with her own unique way.
Eve Dombkowski/Sue Hushin
A few years ago I walked into a art boutique in Newburgh New York. I was just learning about and being intrigued by metal clay . I noticed a necklace and asked the shop owner if this was made with metal clay. She told me it was , and as we began to talk more about it I told her I lived in CT. She asked me if I knew of Lis-el Crowley an amazing artist, and teacher who I should look up. I immediately googled Li-sel. I later contacted her and she invited me to her CT metal clay guild. I had the opportunity to take a class at her home studio.
She was kind, inspiring, full of life and art, incredibly welcoming and inclusive. She was so free to share her knowledge of art. I’m so grateful to have known Li-sel even for a short time. Lynne Allen
Lisel was a beautiful person and was taken from this earth way too soon. It was because of Lisel that I joined the Ct. guild. I have met some incredible people there and loved being able to have spent some precious time with Lisel. Her knowledge and guidance will be greatly missed. There is a hole in my heart knowing she is gone.
My heart and warm wishes goes out to her family and to those that were close to her. She is now an angel in heaven. 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻
God has gained our Angel, gone way too soon. I feel so privileged to have met her and shared so many wonderful memories together. When I was in her presence I felt her love. When my husband of 48 years passed her love and compassion was so appreciated. She will forever be in my heart. Fly with the Angels my dear friend. 😥😥❤️❤️❤️
Losing Lis- el was not supposed to be so soon. She has touched each and everyone of us in so many ways. Her enthusiasm, love, and craziness kept us going. I felt her passing deeply as I again have lost a dear friend. When I first joined the Guild and my husband passed she hugged me and said and gave me a spiritual awareness that I will never forget. I hardly knew her at the time but we immediately bonded. Her spirit will resound as we all join for our meetings as she will always be there.
My heart is broken especially for her daughter Alexis. I hope that the strength of her family and friends will be there for her.💔💔🙏🙏 Sharon Lamonakis
I too made a number of videos for Cool Tools not long after Lis-el had made hers. I remember making my first mistake on camera and said "Oh damn" and then apologized for my inappropriate language and then fact that I interrupted the shooting. A choir of voices in the room (all the camera crew and others there) chimed in with "Man ..... that"s NOTHIN" you should here Lis-el when she's shooting HER videos - she could make a truck driver blush!!!". "We have an entire video of just her out-takes" they added. I thought they were kidding - apparently, not.
I was so fond of this little bit of "devil" in this angel.
I’ve been thinking quite a bit about Lisel, creativity, lack of inspiration, positive energy and where am I going with my art. I didn’t realize how much being creative has had an impact on my life. Lis-el was a big part of this new journey for me and I am saddened by the fact that I can’t share thoughts with her.
I met Lisel many years ago when I was trying out metal clay- making the jump from polymer clay. We hit it off immediately and from then on I would make myself at home at her gallery, taking so many classes, certification etc. Sometimes I could tell she was losing patience with me because I was insecure. I had a habit of putting myself down regarding my work and she would always reprimand me for that- even in class. Sometimes I would just drive up to her gallery- get some pizza, share lunch and shoot the breeze in her big corner chairs and ottoman. She had a bowl of misc beads you could put your hands in and just play. I cannot count the time and classes I spent with her-so many.
She called me Lynnie Lou a pet name she did with some of us. I miss her as a friend, teacher and feel she had so much more to do, yet she was taken away. After she was diagnosed, Alexis, Denise, Lis-el and I spent a day at my house journaling and lunch. She caught on quick and did a beautiful page.
She fought hard and stood by her belief that she could beat this thing- RIP and know You will always be in my heart. Lynnie Lou- Lynn Zettlemoyer
The picture below came from Sara Brown. This was from a Wee Fairy Village installation. Just a great picture of Lis-el, Sara, Bevlynn and Bettina.