Well, every great piece has humble beginnings - some humbler than others…
Anyway, I’m giving the once a week blogging a go and divulging a little about how I conceive and build a piece. It’s not a pretty process…
This project is for a ‘deliberate’ self portrait show at a gallery in downtown Mpls. I’ve not done one in about 15yrs and haven’t enjoyed looking in the mirror since then. But there ya go - we all age.
Anyway, I decided to give wood carving a go. I received a bunch of raw bass wood chunks a number of years ago and finally broke down and bought a nice starter chisel set. It’s obviously harder than the pink insulation foam I’ve been carving, but yields such nice tooth marks that I’m kinda diggin it no matter how the results look. It’ll be interesting if it really looks like me.
Anyway, the photos are of the piece in process from the clay ‘proof of concept’ model with the plastic toy sub, to the first full size draft of the piece (appx 3ft w x 4 ft H x 1 ft D). I wanted the piece to be a bit of an updated play on the baroque wigs the French upper classes and the elaborate hats of generals of the 17th and 18th centuries. The wigs featured bird cages, fruit and small wooden battleships. The generals hats/helmets featured eagles, ostrich feathers and all kinds of macaroni on them. I thought that I’d update it with one of my forms made into a hat. As far as the form, it’s kinda a country church/WWII American “Gato Class” submarine. I’m not sure where this imagery is going, but I think it’s interesting. It looks almost like a ‘dunce’/jester cap/French admiral’s hat. All of of these “looks” ride the ridge in that sweet spot that’s neither one viewpoint or the other. I like that my work is a bit of a “Rorschach Test” and that people see what they want in it.
Well, it’s snowing again… I hope you’re enjoying the weather where ever you are.