Monday, October 28, 2013

Sculpture and the Bronx Zoo

Are you tired of reflective glass buildings?
I love when architecture has something to say.

Jennifer Cook took these photos of architectural sculpture at the Bronx Zoo.
See previous post with her work in Pumpkin Sculpt USA.

An almost flying rhinoceros. 

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

Monday, October 21, 2013

Sculpture and Tom Houha

The future is here, and architect Tom Houha is having fun with it.
He bought an Epilog laser cutter in 2008 and has been building intricate models ever since.
My favorite is his tribute to the art of drafting.
Yes. It's a model of a drafting table and tools.

It's touching because everything architectural is now done on computers.
Know anyone who learned their skills the old fashioned way on a drafting table?
This would make a nice gift for them.

Houha designed these small structures that are intricately detailed and cast wonderful shadows.

Tom has created models of all the iconic bridges of Portland.

 Houha's prototypes of the Hawthorne, St Johns, and the Broadway bridges on a workbench.

To see more, visit Tom Houha's website.
Tom Houha's designs are available online from his Etsy store.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sculpture and Ritual - The Money Dance at the Wedding #4

Planning only takes you so far. We have no idea if any of this will work......

The Wedding Dinner is winding down, David makes his toast to marriage for all loving couples.

The music is vamping tune by Boris Kovac and LaDaABa Orchestra's "Tango Apocalypso"
I've given kazoo-like noise makers to the family and guests to make funny sounds.
Two of their friends spring into action and dress the newlyweds in the vest and belt.

The room comes alive. It is funny and silly, but most importantly, it is WORKING! 
People get out of their chairs to dance and pin their gifts of support directly on the couple.
No instructions necessary.

 K's aunt begins with her gifts.
That blue mylar really works! It amplifies every move of her body.

I wish I had more photos, but after orchestrating all this, I just wanted to enjoy the rest of the evening.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Sculpture and Ritual - The Money Dance #3.

For the second costume, I was going to use a white baseball cap with BRIDE spelled out in rhinestones, some tulle veiling and lots of gold paper clips in chains.

Sort of a Field of Dreams meets a Chinese child-bride look.

That idea got cancelled when their friend said "Bad idea."
"You don't want to mess with the wig she'll be wearing."

Do we laugh or cry?

Plan B shifts the focus from head to waist.
Easier to put on. But what is it going to be?

A belly dance belt to start, but that loose metal might snag if her dress is a sheer material.
Let's back that with an antique strip of French ribbon.
Hmmm, something old and blue. This will work. Start sewing clips on...

This is pretty but doesn't match the vest in impact.
How about adding a fringe of electric blue mylar? 
It's a table skirt from the party supply store.
This adds sound and movement, and 2.5 more feet!

While much of this sewing was done at home at night, this last addition was sewn in a perfect setting. Having flown across the country to New Hampshire, the last thing I wanted to do was do more. Everyone else went on a hike, allowing me some peace and quiet and a beautiful view of the green hills.

Next, the Money Dance at the Wedding.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Sculpture and Ritual - The Money Dance #2

Q: How do you create group interaction with people who don't know each other?
A: You create a ritual.

Q: How do you create a ritual?
A: One way is to create objects that invite participation. 

Design parameters for money dance costumes:
1 It's got to be quick to make. (We're leaving in two days!)
2. It's got to be easy to stuff in a suitcase.
3. It's got to be easily understood and require no explanation.
4. Extra points if it's funny and colorful.

Start with a man's suit vest.
David volunteered his.....
Shop for metal clips so people can give their gifts to the couple. By attaching them directly.
Who knew clips come in bright colors at Office Depot? Fun!
Sew clips to vest.

 Lots of clips for lots of money.....Sympathetic magic?

Do I know if this is going to work, NO! but now I'm committed to finding out!
 It's important to do product testing.
Money clips on easily.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Sculpture and Ritual - The Money Dance #1

Friends are getting married. Together for years, they have all the stuff they need,
and asked for money to finace a honeymoon in Hawaii.

David asked, "How do you give money?"
I said, "If you are Chinese, you put it in a beautiful red envelope.
If your are not Chinese, you do a money dance."

He looked at me (again) as if I make everything up and said, "MONEY DANCE?"

"Look it up. You'll find examples on the internet. 
It's a lot more fun than leaving a boring pile of white envelopes on a gift table."

And so began this sculpture project.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Sculpture and Travel - Drawing Lunch Out

September was a month of travel. 
Four separate vacations jam packed into one very LONG vacation.

A wedding in New Hampshire. 
A week in New York City. 
Travels in Normandy and Brittany in France.
A week in Paris.
What does a sculptor do while away from the studio?
How well does sculpture travel?
 ....and translate into other languages?

Read along and find out!
Drawing lunch out in the Luxembourg Gardens