Category Archives: sculpture

Stacking Stones

Humans have been stacking stones for an awfully long time. England’s Stonehenge was thought to be used as a burial site, and created as early as 2500BC. Inuksuks, made by the inhabitants of the Arctic region, were used as markers for travel routes and hunting grounds. Cairns have been found in Scandinavia as trail and sea marks, and in Somalia, to indicate tombs of former kings. Modern cairns are commonly used to indicate hiking trails, biking trails, or areas of possible danger. And some very patient people have even transformed rock balancing into performance art. These man-made stacks of stones and delicately balanced sculptures are truly fascinating things of beauty.

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Filed under Art and Nature, rock painting, sculpture

Silly Creature Sculpture

“If people did not sometimes do silly things, nothing intelligent would ever get done.” Ludwig Wittgenstein.

He’s got a point, and that’s what this project is all about. Making a silly creature means letting your imagination go wild and the sillier, the better. Think wings, multiple eyeballs, crooked and disjointed parts, anything goes. Then we can move onto something more intelligent.

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Garden Art

Earlier this summer, I suggested spending some time hunting and gathering outdoors to collect items for future arts and crafts projects. This is one of those projects where you’ll be able to make use of your treasures. Many of your gathered items are typically found on the ground, only to be stepped on or tossed in the compost pile, so you may be surprised to see how this blending of nature and imagination can create some really interesting garden art.

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Filed under Art and Nature, recycling, sculpture

Ganesh Clay Sculpture

Ganesh is the elephant-headed Hindu god of wisdom, success, and good fortune. He is one of the most popular Hindu deities whose birthday is celebrated during the Ganesha Chaturthi Festival falling between August 20th and September 15th. This god is hugely popular, and is prayed to before starting important things such a new job or even before writing school exams!

Ganesh has a long trunk, big ears, and a large pot-bellied body of a human being. His four hands each hold a symbolic object. In his upper right hand he holds an elephant goad (rod) which helps remove obstacles and be steered in the right direction. The noose in Ganesh’s upper left hand helps to capture all difficulties. His lower right hand is used to bless his devotees. Finally, a modak (sweet rice ball) or a lotus flower is held in his lower left hand, as a symbol of human evolution and joy.

Several months before the Ganesh Chaturthi celebration, beautifully decorated clay and plaster models of Ganesh are made by artisans. They are used to decorate homes and local communities throughout the festivities. We will be making a clay model of Ganesh. Now that you’ve learned a bit about this god, why not see if there’s a celebration in your community, so you can experience the festivities first hand.

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Filed under clay, India, Multicultural Art, sculpture

Mexican Folk Art Suns

Mexico has a tradition of making beautiful folk arts and crafts which are both decorative and utilitarian. Different regions and native groups have their specialties, and a variety of materials are used including clay, textiles, metal and paper. The region of Metapac is known for its clay work which includes beautifully designed suns, and like many other cultures, the people of this region have worshipped the sun in recognition of its role in enabling us to survive on this earth. Admittedly, the suns in the photo above look a little serious and even confused, but they have a tremendous load to bare and can’t possibly be smiling all the time. Maybe the one you make will look a little more relaxed.

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Filed under clay, Mexico, Multicultural Art, sculpture

Crooked Little House

Charlotte Gainsbourg’s song Greenwich Mean Time planted the seed for wanting to make a crooked house. If you listen to the lyrics, you’ll find the song’s inspired by this old English nursery rhyme:

There was a crooked man and he walked a crooked mile,
He found a crooked sixpence upon a crooked stile.
He bought a crooked cat, which caught a crooked mouse.
And they all lived together in a little crooked house.

This had me wandering about the internet for examples of unusual and crooked architecture, of which there is plenty. You can view some amazing images here:  UNUSUAL ARCHITECTURE .

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Creature Cave

Children seem to be fascinated by creatures like dragons, dinosaurs, and bats. This cave aims to provide the perfect dwelling for them and is a lot of fun to make. You can also consider this project a teenager in training moment. Soon enough, you’ll find your male children in particular aspiring to cave-like decor in their own rooms, favoring a dimly lit environment, piles of debris, and bad smells emanating from all corners; a bit like a Hollister store. Have fun.

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