While all my sculpture releases feel special to me, this one feels almost momentous. It is my first attempt at using mixed materials in a major sculpture work, and in as much, it feels like it has opened the field a bit for me.
The concept for this sculpture was well over a decade in the making, with active development running about two years from rough sketch to completion.
While free standing works on their own, these forerunner projects were serving double duty as color and material trials, and helped me refine a number of machining techniques that paved the way for fabricating this much more elaborate composition.
There is plenty in this work that speaks to recent developments within my craft, but the design also marries them with a visual language I have been developing for much (much!) longer. If you dig through my catalogue, you will find references to works that stretch back well over a decade. In this way, I consider it a retrospective piece, one that shows the spectrum of where my work has been and where I think it is going.
While the thesis for some of my smaller editions can often be very specific explorations of a craft or novel concept (like knife making or Netsuke), these major works are typically broader attempts to bring together an entire body of hard won knowledge. So with that in mind, I won’t expound quite as much as I sometimes do.
The earliest drafts of this work were made with the intention that the entire piece would be made of various metals, as is typical. But once my comfort level with working Desert Ironwood increased, that quickly changed as the opportunity it presented is quite obvious.
Once I made the decision to incorporate ironwood into the piece, the rest of the design fell into place quite naturally.
Everything that is except for the color palette, which I was fine tuning right up until the last minute. I even changed a color decision while some parts were underway in the anodizing tank!
The assembly of this work incorporates elements I have used in a number of past works. Most notably is a turnbuckle style fastening system that holds the main body elements together. It is one that I think speaks to the unique opportunities being a machinist can have for the creation of sculpture. The video above should explain a bit more.
Above is also an image with a soda can in it for scale. I was sure to include one this time, as it is one of the most common requests when I release a work.
Dimensions are roughly a 22” square.
The technical drawing for this piece is huge, over 77″ across at full scale.
As always, comments and questions are welcome.