Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Fist-ier Fists of Fury: Dean Kugler at SOFA, and a Sneak Peek at Relic.

A while back I had a POST entitled 'Fists of Fury: Dean Kugler Style".  I got the chance to show the powerful work of my friend, Dean Kugler.  Just last November he was at SOFA (Sculptural Object Functional Art) at Navy Pier in Chicago.  Being in that show is a big deal, in and of, itself.  Wait until you see what he had there!

He had this giant piece "The Desecration Of Adam" in the sculpture garden area.  Here are a couple of shots of the piece getting the rust tweaked in the shop.

A couple shots of the piece against a white wall (because that's what we do)...

...and here is how it looked at SOFA.

In addition to getting his giant Desecration Of Adam piece ready for the show (a near-Herculean task all by itself), he also made a couple bronze sculptures for the show.

In an earlier POST, when I showed a visit to our friend Lonnie Stewart and his studio, I described the process required to make a bronze sculpture.  Dean also worked with Kyle Chipman at The Hot Scots Man Foundry out of Peoria to get his bronzes fabricated.

Below are the various cast piece of one of his pieces waiting to be cut separate free from their sprues, cleaned up, TIG welded together, re-cleaned up, and then sanded/ground smooth.

Here's a shot of Dean Kugler incising various symbols into the 'flesh' of his Desecration piece.

The Desecration of Adam bronze starting to come together.....

Completed with its patina and base.

In my earlier post 'Fists Of Fury' I showed Dean working on his large version of Gravity outside The Figge Art Museum.  Here is his bronze version!

You can see several of the seams where the different cast sections of bronze are joined to create the whole.

Here are a couple shots of the early stages of the patina process.

....and done!

Did somebody mention something about a show called Relic?  In the 7 months since SOFA, Dean has really starting to expand his ideas and execution.  I stopped by his studio the other day to get a sneak peek at what he has been working on.  Here are just a few examples of works from his upcoming show at Quad City Arts.

I love the finish on the wings...

...and also the body.

A couple other pieces in progress.

Those last several images were just to serve as a teaser for the show.  If you wanna see how these pieces turned out, you'll have to go to the show.  Relic opens Friday, June 29th (7-9pm) at Quad City Arts in Rock Island.  Come check it out!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Resurrecting Another Blast From The Past

Out from the vault.

When I had initially started fabricating my Statue Of Liberty figure back in 2016, I was thinking about using it in a show I had coming up in 2017.  However, the opportunity that was presented by showing it at North On 71 (which was a guerrilla show we put together down in Kansas City back in 2016 to coincide with the NCECA Conference (you can read a little bit about that show by clicking this LINK)), was too good to pass up.  I hurriedly (horridly?) 'finished' the piece in time for the show.  It has sat in storage for nearly two years since, unloved, and unfinished to a level of my satisfaction.  Time to revisit the matter.

I had several dissatisfactions with the piece.  The splotchy color was the most glaring offense.  I'm gonna take it back to ground level by unifying the color and then rebuild it from there.  Purple seems to be as good of a base color as any.

I may even return it to its verdigris finish in the long run, but it will be far more even in appearance.

In addition to reusing portions of the collaborative sculpture allinitogether (a piece that Terry Rathje, Dean Kugler, and I built back in 2015) for portions of my horse and rider sculpture (which can be seen/revisited by checking out THIS recent post), I am also reusing parts of it to fabricate the 'base' of statue of liberty as well.

However, I feel this piece needs to have more than just reused sections to form the body.  I want to add some newer carved wood elements to make the base a little more interesting.

This was a 'leftover' face I was considering for the rocket ship in Countdown that has finally found its purpose in this piece.

I make the base out of sheets of plywood that I glue and screw together.  When you mean business, you use both a chemical AND a physical method of fastening.  Once the layers are all attached, I spread Bondo over the surface to make it nice and smooth (or smooth-ish as the case may be...).

Here you can see one half with the pink Bondo color and the other half the exposed edges of plywood.

I brought in one of my studio helpers to paint every nook and cranny on the piece.  She did an even better job than I expected.  The statue looks wonderful/obnoxious.  Here she is just finishing the SOL.  Immediately in front of her at her feet, you can my Mr. Peanut sculpture waiting to be painted.

Another element that is finding a place in this sculpture is the 'Minor' fortress from my previous POST -Building A Fortress: Major, Minor, and Medium.

You can see it here...

You can see it more closely in this image because I climbed up a big ole heavy ladder and took a picture specifically of it.

A shot that hopefully conveys the size/scale of this particular Statue Of Liberty

The same idea from an upwards angle.

Pop Culture Palimpsest is open.  The show runs until September 2nd at The Figge Art Museum.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Processionalization: Power Lunch With The Tasaday: Part II

Processionalization: Power Lunch With The Tasaday is a 5'x20' mural.  I discussed its origins in a PREVIOUS POST.  Here are some images from the 2nd half of the fabrication process.

Actually, before I get into the images, some 'thank yous' need to be doled out.  With profound gratitude, I thank my friends Dawn Wolford-Metallo and Troy Swangstu (you may remember seeing Troy's robusto paintings from a POST back in February) for graciously giving of their free time to help paint the panels with Iron Metallic Surfacer.  Even after I had coated/primed each panel with 4 coats of paint, the panels were still quite 'thirsty' for the iron paint.  It took 2 hours to paint each panel.  It would then take an addition hour (give or take) to come back in the next day and fill in all of the little pits and gaps in the paint coverage in order to ensure each panel was thoroughly covered with paint.

After the whole piece is covered with the Iron Metallic Surfacer they look like this installed side-by-side on the wall.



All five panels together.  Now all I have to do is take them down and hit them with a rusting solution.

I take them out into the Figge Plaza (technically the Bechtel Plaza), lay out some plastic, set the panels up on buckets, and spray them with the rusting solution.  Realistically, since I was using a little hand sprayer bottle that formerly housed some glass cleaner, I probably should say '...I spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray, spray the rusting solution...'.

After the 1st coat...

Three coats of rusting solution and an hour of drying in the sun and wind, the panels are moved back inside and reinstalled on the wall.

A few detail shots....

Then some shots of the ceramic debris.......

There you have it,  Processionalization: Power Lunch With The Tasaday.

Pop Culture Palimpsest is open now through September 2nd at The Figge Art Museum.  If you can, you should go check it out!