Thursday, October 24, 2013

Sculpture and Pumpkins with JL Cook

When you love what you do, is it work or is it play?
Pumpkin Sculpt is both.

Jennifer Cook, aka JL Cook, is a sculptor who makes the work of carving look effortless and fun.
Jennifer and friends showed off their carving skills at the Bronx Zoo as part of Pumpkin Sculpt USA.

Jenn and fellow sculptor, Sue Beatrice, carve 130+ pound pumpkins into animals for the Bronx Zoo. Sue equates pumpkin carving to playing lasts as long as it is performed and then remains only in the memory of those in its presence.
Jenn thinks of carving as creation solely for the sake of creating, making something unexpected and engaging from whatever is on hand and then walking away. Both push the envelope of what is possible with any material, while still allowing the material to be known and visible.

The scorpion was definitely a thought/ planning piece and became a bit of a pumpkin Rubik's cube.

Each creations is only one pumpkin. Every piece and cut of the scorpion carving is planned.
Sue's was more of a detail piece, with a greater sense of whimsy, after all, who would expect a shipwreck pumpkin?

Sue Beatrice, left, with a pirate themed carving. JL Cook with her giant scorpion carving.

Giraffe and friends by Sue Beatrice

Andy Gertler is another fine sculptor at Pumpkin Sculpt USA.

Andy Gertler's carved pumpkins


Jenn said...

I know that "sculpture" and "performance art" seem mutually exclusive, but that is actually what these are, and it actually works really well. Pumpkins are relatively cheap and most people have cut into one, so to see what can be done with them by skilled artists is very eye opening. I loved hearing the kids say: "when I grow up, I want to do that."

Patrick Gracewood said...

You're right Jenn. Pumpkin sculpture is performance/art. And how cool that some kids actually grow up to carve pumpkins and lots of other materials.