A selection of my Hurricane Harvey Heroes monotypes and one of the Humanities pieces are now exhibited in the Houston Flood Museum.
I started the upper torso.
I always make the shoulders too broad and then have to adjust them. I will do that tomorrow.
Today I spent a lot of time cutting off and rewelding. The upper leg/booty was too big. After four hours it now has a trimmer.
I am trying to decide if I need to reinforce the lower half of the body or move on. Once I reinforce the joints it is a lot more difficult to make changes. If I move on without reinforcing the welding joints, the piece could fall apart. That is my dilemma.
This sculpture is about the movement and the energy of rescuing livestock (a pig) during Hurricane Harvey. Today I have to decide on where the figure's weight needs to be to best balance the sculpture and express the energy of hoisting the swine to safety. The photos I took of Griffin while he was walking helped me committe to the foot placement. For the weight, I need new reference photos taken from each side. I am fortunate that my husband is always agreeable to posing for me. We wrapped a stool in a towel to stand in for the pig. Below are the new photos.
dip 3 - wet
Ready for dip 4
the top of the cup is cut off and the blind vents are cut open in order to allow the wax to expand and milt out of the shell.
In the furnace to burn out the wax and the felt
with the wax melted out I now blow out what is left of the felt.
burn out number 2
With an pneumatic air hose I blew out the charred debris from each hat.
A cure from above looking into the cup that the bronze will be poured into.
After blowing out the pieces for a second time I seal all the holes with sparset.
Last Thursday we did our best to pour these but............. plan B we will pour them this this Thursday.
When you witness or experience a horrific event there are images that hold onto you; images that will forever be conjoined to the experience.
Weathering Houston’s hurricane Harvey, I was glued to the TV and Houston’s social media postings. My eyes soaked up videos of contaminated waters creeping in the homes of nearby neighborhoods. I witnessed daring rescues of families as they were evacuated. In amazement, I watched mothers and children pile into garbage trucks, elderly folks in wheel chairs airlifted by helicopters. Through social media calls for help, it became obvious our cities first responders could not get to every home in need. Proudly, I saw brave Texans convert their flat bottom fishing boats, and jacked up pickup trucks into liferafts and search for those who called for help. No Texan would be left behind.
When our street drained, turning off the news and putting my social media in my pocket, I packed up my dry survivor’s guilt and headed down to the George R. Brown convention center to volunteer and treat my pain and my conscience. The Red Cross had turned one-third of the GRB into a families with pets section. Entering the building with dilated pupils I wove my way through the walk ways created by the clusters of cots and kennels occupied by families and their pets. It struck me that even in the midst of a disaster we humans create neighborhoods and small communities, we are pack animals. I headed towards the pop up pet supply store well stocked from donations made by citizens and the volunteer veterinary clinic where I would be helping out. Careful not to disturb the sleeping citizens of the newly formed families with pets city, I was confronted by a single cot. It was freshly dressed in a crisp white sheet accessorized with a fluffy white pillow and tucked in by a cozy, white flannel blanket decorated with tiny Red Cross logos all over. It was isolated from the others waiting for the next victim of Harvey to tuck themselves in and comfort them with safety. With all the rescue images of people trudging through unsanitary water, homes floating in floodwater fresh in my memory bank that cot was shockingly - humanity. Thirty thousand GRB citizens would be relieved to make it their new homestead. It was heart breaking and beautiful all at the same time. I could imagine if I had been rescued that cot would have been a long-awaited relief. I would not have asked the sheet thread count or if the cotton was grown pesticide free. My heart hurt for all those who were grateful to have such a cot. That cot, that crystal clear image of stripped down humanity, is the Harvey image that holds onto me.
Within weeks, I made two watercolor monotype pieces of the cot. One as I saw it and one with a pet waiting for its owner. I was pleased with their crispness and the delicate watery shapes seen when closely inspected. It occurs to me that the cot was so symbolic to me because of the constant looped eyewitness news reporting and abundance of social media posts. I was seeing the same strong images over and over. From my dry den, I too experienced Harvey.
I have taken photos of my television screen and collected screen shots of these images and will use them as inspiration for additional works to go with the cot. It will be interesting to see if it is interesting to anyone but me.
I want to use only black ink on white paper. If I were to make the pieces color ink, I would need to address skin tones and ethnicity. And the truth is that during Harvey, skin color, political and religious affiliations (things that often divide us) were not an issue to the point that they were not even part of the commentary, and that was beautiful. It is a very shuttle way to make a strong statement. I hope it is heard.
My piece "that ball is not going to throw it's self" was selected along with my "fetch I-VI" lenticular.
I will be replacing the pedestal on the "tat ball is not going to throw it's self" piece with a chair. I am going to paint the chair with drippy, thick, flat white paint. It will look like plaster. I will then attach the wire dog to the back of the chair.
Last fall I started a project - an experiment with new materials. My subject the German beak - trumpeter pigeon. He is graceful, interesting and conducive to expressing energy. Picasso drew this same pigeon and called him a the peace dove.
I can't seem to stop the project. Here is another pigeon.
Below are two of my drawings that inspired the project.
This piece is made from upcycled wire cloth I found at Txrx labs. They pour aluminum and use these wire strips to reinforce their molds. They break out the castings and leave the wire mesh in the yard. I always pick it up when we pour bronze because it is sharp. I started playing with it while we waited for the bronze to heat. I fell in love with it's malability, rusted patina and chunks of plaster embedded between the wires.
I sculpted this when I was thinking about urban ecology and how successful birds and especially pigeons have evolved in urban environments. In contrast many of the people we see in these environments with pigeons appear to be struggling to stay present.
This figure leans in on his left side where he is clearly involved in the environment around him. His right side is patently struggling to stay present and his head/brain and right side upper body are not visible to the viewer. Evidence of their absence is depicted through the torn collar and shredded back right of shirt.
I can't to come up with the perfect base for him. Right now he is temporarily sitting in a box wrapped in paper.
The Figure: Interpreted Through Contemporary Mediums
Juried by Barbara A. MacAdam
165 7th St
for details see the link below.
Artist Reception – Wednesday January 18th 6-9PMJan 19 – Feb 19, 2017
Gail Nadeau - "The Red Kimono"Artists:
Steven Palumbo, Kang Sean, Courtney Bae, Elise Thompson, John Gallagher, Petrea Noyes, Carol Coates, Phillip Connell, Tom Acevedo, Barbara Smith, Ronald Gonzalez, Cindee Klement, Andrew Hockenberry, Deborah Druick, Robin Dintiman, Kathy Collins, Claire Gilliam, Candice Flewharty,
Farnosh Olamai Birch, John Power, Philippe Hyojung Kim, Ola Aldous,
Greta Young, Gail Nadeau, Mary Lou Greene, Tomas Modzelewski,
Claire Apana, John Patrick Snyder, Alain Rogier, Diana Burchfield,
Alexa Hoyer, Sophie Brenneman, John Kayrouz, Brooke Alexander,
Joshua Dean, Owen Brown, Sharon Bartel Clements, Rajab Sayed,
John Edwards, Gill Alexander, Lee Ann Carr, Colleen Kelly,