At Dorothy Frankel’s home on Noyac Road in Sag Harbor, an eclectic array of clay sculptures in a natural forest setting forms a unique collage of the handmade and the natural. The sculptor curated her upcoming show in such a way that, in her words, “one piece fluidly feeds into the other,” creating a tranquil atmosphere.

Over the past few years, this abstract sculptor has broadened her artistic horizons by experimenting with myriad shapes and textures of terra-cotta, or refined clay, to create wall sculptures and three-dimensional pieces representing various aspects of nature. In a recent interview, Ms. Frankel explained that her objective is to “push the boundaries of the medium” by melding different clay forms to produce intricate shapes in different hues.

In the “End of Summer” exhibit in her sculpture garden “gallery,” she will be showcasing more than 100 clay, bronze, acrylic, stone and steel sculptures at her Sag Harbor home. The show features her most recent works, largely in terra-cotta, and introduces some new pieces made of steel, which she said is a new medium for her. An opening reception is scheduled at the sculpture garden at 2879 Noyac Road on Sunday, September 14, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Ms. Frankel was a late bloomer as a sculptor. She earned a physiology master’s from Columbia University in 1976 and founded a fitness center in Manhattan before moving in the early ’80s to Sag Harbor. There she discovered her new calling in art and networked with such local artists as Fay Lansner, David Porter and Jay Hoops.

Having taken only one art course as an undergraduate student, she signed up for classes in the mid ’80s at the National Academy of Design to hone her skills. Within a decade, her sculptures were on display in many collections and museums throughout the New York area, elsewhere along the East Coast, and as far away as California. Her home now serves as her studio, exhibition space and permanent residence all in one.

In setting up the new show, Ms. Frankel was inspired by large indoor and outdoor venues such as Guild Hall in East Hampton and Carl Schurz Park in Manhattan to maximize the exhibition space in her own home. The sculptor sought to create an organic setting for the works, one that blended into the outdoor landscape to foster a sense of serenity and introspection. She considers the earthy quality of clay a perfect fit for the natural setting, describing it as a “grounding medium” that evokes a visceral response tied to “introspection, peace and quiet.”

With so many pieces on view, the exhibit is a feast for the senses. Indoors at her gallery of a home, works of art jump out at visitors from nearly every direction. In the first room, a dining table and staircase are surrounded by three mid-size cast stone dog sculptures, smaller bronze and acrylic hands, and three wall sculptures made out of terra-cotta.

In the living room, two vertical wall sculptures—clay representations of golden brown branches—stand in relief against the back wall adjacent to two other clay wall pieces that mimic the craters and indentations found in driftwood. Two clay sculptures of female figures sit to the right, and colorful acrylic triangles are perched on the left. Recent two-dimensional wall pieces made of clay mounted on painted wood hang on the walls of her studio.

Ms. Frankel’s front, side and rear yards form her expansive sculpture garden. The front yard features large clay ensos (Japanese for painted circles); the side yard contains pieces from her recent “hands” series, which she has showcased at Carl Schurz Park in New York and at the Peace Arch International Park in Washington, D.C., and sold to local and New York private collectors.

Three narrow pathways intertwine to define the sculpture garden, which is decorated with new clay circle sculptures and small ponds, some shaped around rocks and others around glass-like acrylic pieces that sparkle in the light. “I wanted to do something more unique with water” by sculpting an acrylic base for fountains and other water features, she said.

Ms. Frankel makes her terra-cotta sculptures by drying, casting and molding fragments of clay into different shapes. She has been creating clay ensos for a decade. “I see them as quiet circles that are inspired by the lushness of the greens” in the nearby Elizabeth A. 
Morton National Wildlife Refuge, she said.

An opening reception for the “End of Summer” exhibition at Dorothy Frankel’s sculpture garden will be held on Sunday, September 14, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; bagels and coffee will be served. The exhibition will run through the fall, by appointment. For more information, visit