This is one of my most favorite art pieces! It was no doubt challenging and I found myself living with the bird day and night. I had pictures, drawings, you name it, and it just was a great piece to do. My friends who commissioned me to do it, I kept in touch with throughout the carving and sent emails containing updates along the way.
Often I have people to ask me how do I do what I do. The picture above is how it all starts. It is messy. There are pictures scattered everywhere. Sometimes I find feathers. Always I use a skin of the actual bird for colors and feather shapes. But beyond that, it is a real shot in the dark to use a mount or something that has already been preformed. I will go to places in Memphis that have the proper permits for birds such as the University of Memphis or the Pink Palace museum or other places that have specimens of the birds. But before I go there, it is always something I begin with in my mind.
I will draw. I will get pictures. I will research. I will think. I will dream. I will do a clay model sometimes. And yes, I will ask God what is it that God intends for what I am about to do. That part really tends to flow throughout my art projects especially those that are complicated. And this owl certainly fit the bill.
In my own struggle to find relief from chronic pain, after three back surgeries with no relief, I had a spinal cord stimulator implanted and it has really helped. One night when I couldn’t get any relief from pain and couldn’t sleep, I got up and created this piece out of clay.
Given how those who suffer with chronic pain try to reach and stretch out of the shear craziness of pain, the dove, the bird of peace, in my art piece titled Release!, is attempting to pull out of the messiness and ugliness of pain and fly away. Thus, as the title suggests, the desire to have a release from pain.
It is produced in conjunction with a local foundry and there are a limited number of signed pieces in production for anyone wishing to purchase one. It is made out of bronze and mounted on a redwood burl base. Looking at the piece closely, one will notice my finger prints captured in the bronzing process. Email me for a price quote at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 1988, my friend Becky Wilson created something significant called Bridge Builders, which today is still the largest program of the umbrella organization called Bridges. The vision for that organization, founded in Memphis, Tennessee, was to bridge the socioeconomic gap by bringing together people of all colors and economic backgrounds and break down the barriers existing in our society. Throughout the year, youth from all over the city gather to discuss and break those barriers. Continue reading “Mourning Dove at Rest”