Born in Hawaii to a family of professional artists, Moana Ponder was immersed in the art world from childhood. She was educated at the University of California at Berkeley and has also studied under Fritz White and others.
Originally a watercolor artist she made the transition to sculpture in 1995 and has found it to be a satisfying medium for her. Her figurative work focuses on dynamic dancers and pensive poses. She delights in motion and takes inspiration from the beauty of the natural environment. Many pieces are the personification of some aspect of nature.
Time spent in Italy and France has had a profound effect on her work. Therefore much of her work leans to the classic figurative. However, newer work also includes work with a more contemporary feel and focus is often on the emotions.