Thursday, March 27, 2014

(Still) Finishing More Sabbatical Work

It's spring break, so why not finish some work I was going to finish in January? I didn't get a ton of time in the studio this week, what with traveling Monday and prepping classes and all, but I did get in there today. First I had to excavate a path through this winter's detritus.

My daughter took this picture of me actually working in my studio this afternoon. This is impressive because yesterday no one could fit in my studio.
I plan to spend a bit more time in the studio tomorrow and actually get good quality images of my sabbatical work, images not taken in a gallery with a line between the pedestal and the wall or a window in the background. In order to prepare to take slides, I had to unbox the work that was in Biomorph. I brought it home two months ago and it had not been touched since.

The base in December
The unboxing of work and putting away of bike parts went so well (and my new audiobook is so good) that I decided that I might just have time to finish one last sabbatical piece, the one I didn't quite have time to tackle in December/January.

I cut out circles of paper with a sticky back to attach to the end of the piece.

The original plan for this piece was to have a contrasting material, like paper inside, visible through the openings. I glazed the edges of the cutouts and later intended to glue some paper inside the piece so that the openings were only a quarter inch deep. This was, apparently, not a plan based on actual materials and the physics of my finger joints. So, after what amounted to several months of problem avoidance, I decided that red paper circles covering the openings is a reasonable solution to the problem. A better solution might be to build the piece with a removable end, but I still think of my works as being basically complete objects, even as I interrupt and adulterate the forms with more and more non-ceramic elements.

Mixed epoxy and the base with the rod taped in position while the epoxy sets.

After solving the problem of the paper and the openings on the end, I got around to epoxying the parts together. I knew what I intended to do and my plan didn't really change in this respect. The piece is meant to have a blue base with keys, pictured above, and a bike wheel (sans tire) attached to the top of a metal rod going through the middle of the base. I had started to put these parts together when I ran out of sabbatical in January.

the top of the piece

The top bike wheel part will be detachable from the base so that it is easier to transport. I currently have the wheel balanced on boxes as the epoxy sets on the metal piece that will go inside the base rod. Meanwhile the rod is being epoxied into the base. The epoxy takes 24 hours to set, so tomorrow afternoon I can put the two parts together and see how they look. I planned for the top piece to spin, but I may have been over enthusiastic with the epoxy where it encountered the moving parts.

I had extra epoxy so I repaired a couple old pieces.

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