Yes, a year in the making! How can it take that long to enshrine a tree root in a concrete arch?
- Create a cardboard form;
- cover it with a chicken-wire armature;
- apply a 2 cm. layer of mortar mix concrete;
- add a finishing coat white Portland cement;
- polish it with a rotary sanding disk;
- and add the centrepiece made of tree roots sanded smooth; ebonized with a mixture of vinegar and steel wool finished with three coats of clear water-based polyurethane.
I’ve been mulling this over — for a year — and then it was revealed to me last Sunday morning. An epiphany of sorts, while driving along a bleak section of Highway 407 with my wife on our regular pilgrimage to visit our mothers who living in nursing homes in east-central Ontario.
It was the piping of Joan Biaz singing “We Shall over Come” on CBC Radio 1, The Sunday Edition that evoked not only a deep wave nostalgia, but also a realization that it is in the “singing” that I take the greatest pleasure. I connect to my art through the process, so I’ve had a year of savouring the “singing” while making this piece — not bad.
Resources (added July 22, 2009):
Art Concrete: website by Owen Sound, Ontario artist Andrew Goss (opens in new window) – great how-to section with mixture recipes and gallery of work from various artists
The Creative Fire by Clarissa Pinkola Estes (opens in new window) – 3 CD set of poetry, storytelling and myth to fan the inner fire