Post 4: Weight

After I got back from my workshop at the end of June, I got to work on the sculpture I’d started.   I was applying what I’d learned about sculpting at the workshop, and the form was starting to come together.  The I found out the issue with sculpting a form out of solid clay: weight.  As I added more and more clay to the sculpture, it got heavier and heavier, and the armature that I built wasn’t sturdy enough to support the clay anymore.  I came back to the studio one day to find the bottom half of the sculpture had fallen off, pulled from the rest by its weight.  I reattached it, and a day later, it was on the ground again.  I spent the next couple weeks sculpting at the same time as I tried to fix the problem; I tightened all the pipes on the armature, I added more pipes toward the bottom, hoping they would hold it up, I added wooden supports to the existing armature, to make it more stable.  Nothing worked.  Time and time again, I came back to find pieces of the sculpture had fallen off.  It was at this point that I realized I would either have to completely redo the armature, or I would have to try something new.  I decided on the latter, hoping to get something less dynamic done this summer, and come back to the sculpture once I had more experience with armatures.  So, I started on a new sculpture, this one mostly on the ground, and only in need of limited supports.  Like the last one, this sculpture would be solid and hollowed out, and it would be very large.  I got the armature built, and started laying blocks of clay down before I had to wrap it up again, and leave for my second workshop.

Only one picture with this post, in my frantic attempts to save the sculpture I didn’t remember to take many pictures, and I don’t have any of the second sculpture in its early stages.  The picture that I do have shows some of the things I tried to save the sculpture, wooden supports and extra pipes have been attached, but it wasn’t enough.