The following two sculptures portray opposite aspects of human relations. "Life's Companions" are there for each other, as they row into the ups and downs of life (represented by the boat). I imagine they will remain intimate even though time passes and a physical distance may prohibit them from seeing each other often. On the other hand, those in "Close Yet Apart" are so much in pain because of their psychological and emotional distance. The base is a bridge, but it has a crack right in the middle.
My friend kindly responded to my ambivalence about my career with Anthony Harpoon's quote: "Do not be distracted by the sirens whose beautiful songs seduce the artist away from their own true mission. Let the maestros and maestras follow their passions while you follow yours, because being authentic is an art in and of itself." It resonated with me. The authenticity of my art lies in what I express. Let that be my unique song! Thank you Steve.
It's nice to have bread-and-butter products in a show. I am hoping these will become ones for me. People can pick and choose and make their own buffalo family. Here are some examples.
This is my second jar reflecting two conflicting sides that may coexist in the same heart or in the same part of the world. Outside, a snake is constricting a crane chick, which is powerless. Inside, a flock of cranes, a symbol of peace and longevity, is crossing an ocean. This "Look Inside" jar is open to different interpretations. I will be honored if you could kindly share your thought with me.
I tried to come up with less complicated new products. I also wanted to play with textures, which would enhance an ash stain I intended to use. On top of that, I wanted to sell the new items at the Sculpture in the Park Show this August. That meant they had to blend well with the rest of my work. First, I copied a Japanese wood sculptor Enku's style, but sculpting cute standing monks no longer satisfied me. After failing to simplify my Little Buddhas, I said to myself, "The new products do not need to be human figures." That opened my horizon.
When I teach hand-building this year, I plan to have my students make "this is me" jars. The jar's exterior represents how others or society perceive the person; and the interior, how he/she actually is. Taking an idea from the project, I decided to create "this is you" jars. The rabbit on the first piece represents a person, who often hides or runs away from conflicts. Inside, he/she carries a turtle, which is a symbol of resilience.
I was excited to try a reduction and carbonization firing on my bisons. Before firing, iron based stains were slapped on them. Each piece was then placed in a ceramic jar with sawdust and straws. As the combustible burned off, the amount of oxygen in the jar was reduced, turning the iron into various degrees of browns. As the oxygen was depleted, incomplete combustion occurred, leaving traces of smoke on the pieces. This kind of coloring would be extremely difficult to achieve in cold finishes like acrylic or oil paint. I am very happy to experiment further with this technique. This is just the first batch. More are coming....
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About This Blog
This page is an window for you to see my creative process. I would like to encourage you to leave your comments here. What kind of thoughts did my art provoke you? What viewpoint do you agree/disagree to? Your feedback will feed my art going forward. Thank you.