A Year in the Making

sculpture - untitled 2009

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

Out of focus



Originally uploaded by dwightstorring

What if the intention of the camera was to capture colour and form rather than replicate three dimensional objects on a two dimensional medium? This set of images is what I think it might look like if we changed the camera’s character.
I’ve been intentionally making images out of focus for some time now and I’m outing myself with this post. It clearly does work for everything, but in some situations I find the colour-and-form images evoke a deeper emotional response than a sharply focused one. It frees the mind to explore and seek out a personal narrative for the piece.
Click on the photo on the right to see more colour and form.