As we enter week six, (or is it seven?) of staying at home, sheltering in place or self-quarantining and contemplating the economy, the pandemic and the civil unrest it seems that the days are starting to run into each other in a kind of grey fog. Is today Tuesday? When was the last time I was out of the house? What did I fix for lunch yesterday? QUARANTINING is an emotional response to the current situation. UnlikeSAINT JOHN THE MOSAICIST it is a minimalist piece using only six pieces repurposed from a couple of uncompleted projects and a drab palette. It may also be an unfinished piece with the potential, like life, to brighten considerably. (2020) (24” x 24” x 2”) ($150)
AFTERMATH #2, like AFTERMATH #1, was seven years in the making. The main body of the piece is part of a tree limb shattered by Super Storm Sandy in 2012. The only work done to it was wire brushing it to remove dirt and evening the bottom. The base is unglazed bisque fired paper clay. While the original inspiration for AFTERMATH #2 was cleaning up after Sandy, the final impetus to finish it was the images of the Bahamas after Hurricane Dorian. (14” x 8” x 7”) (2019) ($225)
AFTERMATH #1 is a sculptural piece that is seven years in the making. The main body of the piece is part of a tree limb shattered by Super Storm Sandy in 2012. The only work done to it was wire brushing it to remove dirt and evening the bottom. The base is unglazed bisque fired paper clay. While the original inspiration for AFTERMATH #1 was cleaning up after Sandy, the final impetus to finish it was the images of the Bahamas after Hurricane Dorian. (19 ½” x 9” x 9”) (2019) ($245)
GMO # 37 is a mixed media sculpture using a found object and hand built raku fired paper clay. Somehow, using a purely natural object (a piece of yew root), and something completely manufactured (paper clay), seemed the appropriate way to depict a “genetically modified object”. GMO #37 is part of a series of mixed media sculptural pieces I’m going to be concentrating on this year. For want of a better title, I’m calling it my “Look What I Found” Series.
My inspiration for ENT was the tree like creatures, guardians of the forests of Middle Earth in the time of the Kings as depicted by J.R. R. Tolkien in his Trilogy: The Lord of the Rings. Those of you familiar with the Ents from either the books or the movie will know that I have stretched artistic license to its limit in creating my ENT from welded steel. 8” x 3” welded steel framed to 6” x 11” x 1”.
THE ROOTS OF DANCE started out with me finding some driftwood on a lakeshore which when combined together (with minor trimming) reminded me of a pair of dancers from a recently seen contemporary dance performance. I hope and believe that my ROOTS OF DANCE comes close to capturing the grace, power and enthusiasm of the original dancers. Found objects on an artist-made wooden base. 12” x 9” x 6 ½”
COLLABORATING WITH POLISTES is all about integrating different forms of paper into a sculptural piece. The top portion is a paper wasp nest (genus Polistes) which I found in a Koosa Dogwood tree when the leaves came down last October. The wasps made the paper by mixing plant material and saliva. The base portion is hand built and Raku fired paper clay. I made the paper clay by mixing rehydrated scrap clay and recycled newspapers. Both the wasps and I shaped our portions to meet our particular needs. No wasps were harmed in the making of COLLABORATING WITH POLISTES. 30” x 18” x 10”
I’ve never really understood the “sport” of trophy hunting, particularly when the “trophy” is not something capable of hunting you back. For food or fur, okay, but just for a head to hang on a wall? Having said that, TROPHY: THE LAST RED-CRESTED WATCHAMACALLIT represents my first, and probably last, venture into the art of trophy gathering of endangered species. TROPHY: THE LAST RED-CRESTED WATCHAMACALLIT is a mosaic/mixed media wall hanging composed of glass, hand built paper clay, marbles and MDF. 12”H x 7 ½”W x 10”D
I recently completed a four day woodcarving course at the Cedar Lakes Conference Center in Ripley, WV taught by Bob Barris. I came back with all my fingers still intact, some knowledge of woodcarving, and the intention to keep working in this medium. The piece shown above on the left is my first student piece, a classic “Wood Spirit” with hair and beard; and the one on the right shows how I morphed it into my own design, a “Medieval Knight” with helmet, sword, shield, chain mail and a beard. Having ordered the tools I think I need to keep carving, I’m going to spend the next few weeks with a sketch pad and sorting through my wood pile.