Timmerman "Timmie" Daugherty was born to Quaker, nature loving parents in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. Raised near woods and streams and surrounded by animal life, Daugherty's scientist mother took time to impart her own fascination with nature. "My favorite childhood memory was my mother reading to me from Stories the Iroquois Told Their Children, a book full of fairies and little people. Even now, exploring nature is where I feel most connected to something bigger than myself." Daugherty now has two grown children of her own and two "perfect" grandchildren.
As an adult, Daugherty became a distinguished lawyer and served as founding president of the National Conference of Women's Bar Associations. She taught college courses on gender-based discrimination, published a countywide newspaper, and worked in public policy. Daugherty moved to Guilford Avenue in Baltimore City in 1989 and participated in annual city garden tours. While walking her dog, she would find interesting castoffs in the alleys to add her garden, noting how joyfully people on the garden tours responded. She recalls, "My thrifty Quaker parents taught me the value of repairing and recycling, thus creating my life-long love of rescuing abandoned items."
After a minor car accident in 1998, Daugherty was left with excruciating chronic pain and was forced to quit a powerful job that "left me feeling brain dead." Making her art—mostly assemblages and mosaics—became her best relief from pain. Daugherty also began to artfully transform her townhouse, inside and out. "I had seen the 1995 Tree Of Life opening exhibition at the American Visionary Art Museum and it had taught me that I didn't have to go to art school to be an artist."
Gender, humor, and nature are themes Daugherty explores through her art. "The spiritual path of the Quakers, free of dogma or of any fixed set of practices, enabled me to approach art on a similar path, outside the rules of traditional art. Nature has always encouraged diversity, and humankind is just one part of the wider family of life."
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