February 16, 2010

With my usual promptness ūüėČ there were a couple of projects from the last year or so that I have yet to add to my website, that I wanted to share. The first is a sculptural piece, and the second a furniture commission that was made much more interesting to finish by the impending arrival of the twins.

Teeter 28¬†consists of a series of polymer clay drawers and drawer boxes precariously attached to a curly maple upright, with carved walnut pieces that “pierce” the upright.

Teeter 28 was one of two pieces I entered in the International Polymer Clay Association’s 2008 Progress and Possibilities competition. Both Teeter 28 and Birds n’ Bees Cairn were finalists in the Sculptural Objects category.¬† The piece then traveled to Minneapolis for the exhibit CODAchrome: A Snapshot of Craft in America at the American Association of Woodturners Gallery of Wood Art.

The second piece was a commission for an entry area cabinet.¬† The client had developed the concept for the main elements including a cell¬†phone charging area over an open area similar to a dry sink.¬† The “trough”, as we called it, would have a removable cover to hide clutter when they have guests over, and the cover would store inside the cabinet area below.¬† We tried to maximize the space available so the measurements were very specific to her home (the height of the baseboard moulding; the location of the mirror above etc.).¬†

It was an interesting piece to work through, made more interesting in the second trimester of carrying twins.  I have never been so conscious of  how cold and hard the concrete floor in my shop can be under foot!  Near the end I decided to get some help with some of the last table saw cuts.  Anyone who has seen what happens when a table saw kicks back would understand!

This cabinet had a little of everything: cherry, padauk, maple, polymer clay, acrylic paint, silver, brass, copper paint with patina.   The door panels have sheets of polymer clay created with the mokume gane technique, carved and painted overlays, and door pulls with fine silver and polymer clay.  The end pieces for the charging area were my first real foray into bent lamination, and have subsequently led to a lot of experimentation combining wood and polymer laminations.  More on that later! 

It was a challenging piece, a puzzle with many parts, but very satisfying.


February 25, 2008

dscn2270crop03.jpgFolding Screen is now on view at Strathmore as part of the 17th Annual Strathmore Membership Juried Exhibition.  This wide ranging exhibit will be open until April 5, 2008.

This piece was fun to make with stronger colors than I tend to use in larger pieces.  It is a three part screen with a large amount of polymer clay veneer, and sweeping painted overlays.  Folding screens are an interesting format.  They can be highly decorative, and loosely formated, yet very versatile.


February 1, 2008

dscn4903-1-1crop01.jpgA departure in theme for me, my new sculptural vessel piece, Birds n’ Bees Cairn, was finished just in time for the annual Art You¬† My Valentine? exhibit at the Mansion at Strathmore¬† (February 2 – 25, 2008).¬†

It was a fun piece to make… a little of everything.¬† The underside of the walnut base is carved, and finished with layered paint to emphasize depth.¬† Combined with the smooth, oil-rubbed top, the base has taken on a toadstool effect that I¬†would like to further explore.¬† The bottom two “rocks” are both polymer clay vessels…even in my most sculptural work I feel a pull to make it do something.¬† I was a little concerned that I would have trouble with the upper components being top heavy, but¬†the snug fitting lids hold well.¬† Two of the “rocks” are ¬†patterned with the mokume gane technique.¬† The other two are layered with a variety of techniques, including a touch of caning for the translucent bee wings.

dscn4923-1-1crop01.jpgThis piece is the first reflecting my recent interest in cairns.  The simplest definition is a pile of stones, but the meanings are vast.  Cairns may mark a place of meaning, or be intended to guide.  The history is deep for this simple manipulation of natural elements.