Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day 26 of the '29 Faces' Challenge, another bas-relief Tableau sculpture

Day 26 of the '29 Faces in February' art blog Challenge!  Gosh, I can hardly believe that once I post today's Face with this very entry, there will be but 3 more Faces in February to go....?  That's amazing!

In any case, I do hope my Face for today (bird face!) is not stretching it too much here: 

 "Robin Song" 
9.5 x 11.5 Papier Mache bas-relief Tableau Sculpture

Like my piece from several entries ago, "A Bird in the Hand", this is a bas-relief tableau-style sculpted work, using a second-hand, upcycled frame that has been mache-d over and incorporated into the piece as a whole:

View from the bottom to show the 3-D sculptural elements

So this piece has an interesting history.  I actually began it years ago (sound familiar?) as an entry for one of the themed monthly art exhibits of the online art community, EBSQ.  I recall working on it, and being happy with where it was going in terms of the sculpting....only somewhere along the line I had underestimated my time and it wasn't long before the deadline was looming.  Papier mache can be notoriously tricksy, because you can never be certain just how long any particular step is going to take -- not to mention the potential for uncooperative weather to totally gum up the works (say, if it's cold, damp, and rainy -- which I call  "witchin' weather", because papier mache just will not DRY).  Whatever the case, I ended up being unfortunately forced, with mere minutes to spare before the official deadline, to enter it half-finished (the sculpting of it all done, but not the painting part of it).  In my rush I had slapped on at least some color, but overall it just wasn't 'done' to my mind.  I did enter it anyway, but really wasn't at all personally satisfied:

My half-finished piece, as originally entered.

I always meant to return to it and properly finish it one day, but never seemed to get around to it.  That is, until today.  And it's glad I am that I did, because I'm much happier with it now....!

'Robin Song" Side View.  Glad to finally be able to declare it 'Finis!'...!

My usual statement regarding my use of salvaged old picture frames in my artwork:

"....I have recently begun painting almost exclusively on supports I create myself using the old, salvaged wooden picture frames that cross my path from time to time (usually for free).  I feel good about giving these unwanted homeless items a second life, not only because trees were cut down at some point to produce them, but also because by the time I get my hands on them they are usually destined for the landfill.  The process of recycling these vintage frames into painting supports/canvases is a lengthy one, typically involving stabilising the frames (which can be quite rickety), cutting thick paperboard to fit, securing it all and pasting and building up a painting surface with layers of overlapping scraps of paper, and adding additional sculptural elements as with my bas-relief tableau sculpture.  But worth it, being as that the end effect is a 3-dimensional surface, complete with a built-in frame, as one cohesive, ready-to-hang whole...".


susie said...

this is beautiful - i love it!

Unknown said...

These are really gorgeous. I'd love to see the process you use to create them!

Patience said...

Thanks so much, Susie! I definitely have plans to do more of these, and soon -- so please be sure to check back! :-)

Patience said...

Hi April -- that is a GREAT idea, thanks so much for the suggestion...! I'm notoriously negligent about taking progress pics of my work -- I just rarely remember to it (especially if it means interrupting what I"m doing to go wash and dry my handss if I'm up to my armpits in papier mache ;-)). But I do have plans to come up with more of these Tableau pieces soon, and photo-documenting my process might very well make for an interesting blog post. Think I will do just that -- and thanks again, April....!