Sunday, April 11, 2010

This post is not what you think it is.

Is she done? I'm not sure. Her "hair" is glued on and she has features.

It was my intention with this sculpture to explore paper mache` in a more natural raw form. With the past works I added paper clay to the garment to smooth it out. This one felt like it was calling for texture. So I painted the "fabric" just as it was- a real thin coat of paper mulch over top the wire mesh that created the shape. I liked it.

Do I dare tell you the story of the hair? I drew this lady with wild hair thinking it was a great metaphor for the meaning of the sculpture. Its about realizing you are "The Source". Meaning YOU are the source of the energy that surrounds you. The word kinetic comes to mind but I have yet to look it up and make sure its accurate to this work.

But that's not the story of the hair. You know how, in your work, you need just the right thing? And you also know that you probably won't find it? I do this thing where I rack my brain trying to think of where I would find something I could make into this woman's crazy hair. If not, what could I use to make it? And then how would I make it? It's the whole "Nursery Debacle" all over again.

And then when, lo and behold, praise God, you find the exact thing you need...of course there's a problem. Of Course! Because such is my lot in life, there is always a problem.

I had to steal it. There were no other viable options. Yep. I think you'll understand. I came across this valuable piece in a bathroom. Not just any bathroom but the bathroom at the pyschologist's office where I take Kayla to have her problems fixed. I say it like that because at every meeting there is some point where I put out a non-verbal screaming command "Fix her, Damn it, so I don't have to kill her because she deserves better!!!" We have a great psychologist. I think he may help her over time. But he's not in charge there. So when I am in the bathroom, while she is getting shrinked into less of a problem, and I find the perfect piece of artificial tree branch sticking out of a dusty artificial mixed green arrangement that was ten years old if it was a day- ex-florists unite here, if its in a pressed brass container = its right out of the nineties-what am I to do? Do they need it? Do they even know that it exists, right there in their bathroom? Do they even see it? Who do I ask? The psychologist that I am trying to convince that I am a well balanced mature adult and not the reason for all of Kayla's issues? "Excuse me, may I just take a part of your greenery out of the bathroom to use in my art project? Its old and dusty, your arrangements are falling apart and are very outdated, really, I am doing you a favor and its just two little stems? May I? And, are you done fixing her yet?"

There's no receptionist on duty at night. Do I call in the daytime and explain that the artificial twig in their bathroom is the answer to my artistic dilemma? Would they have to get approval through the head office? Would they just say no? How many times would I have to explain what I was asking? Would the receptionist have to put the phone down while she stepped into the bathroom to figure out what I was babbling about? If they said no, what then?

I sweated it for two weeks. Wrong is wrong. You know it, Self said. When you do something that goes against your core beliefs you hack off a piece of yourself you can't glue back on. I know, Self, but really- you know I am going to do it, you know it. Self said- fine, now here comes the catholic guilt but question...don't you think its odd that one of the reasons you are visiting this particular office is Kayla's sticky fingers? Groan, yes Self, I am sure there is a message and a meaning here and I should take the higher ground because I know better and its the right thing to do. And that's probably why I am going to take it. That, and because its the perfect hair material for my sculpture.

So at the next appointment, after silently screaming to the psychologist "Fix this kid!" I went into the bathroom and stole their artificial branch and stuffed it into my purse. Then I went home and washed it. Did you know that when you flush a toilet that toilet germs whoosh out into the air as far as a 5' radius? And that the required public bathroom stall is at least 5' wide so that a wheel chair can turn fully around? And that a lot of businesses allot only the minimum 5' that is legally required? I am a big proponent of requiring an extra 2'feet that will fit a human who is desperately trying to be just outside that radius- even if it is just an alcove that we can press our bodies into until the germs fall to the ground and we can return to washing our hands with scalding hot water.

So there you have it. PLEASE don't turn me in. I hesitate to even push "publish post" I am trusting in the kindness of fellow bloggers and artists to understand.


  1. In your defense, it is perfect. As a former florist, if they have arrangements in brass in their bathroom there is no possible way they are ever, ever, ever going to notice that branch missing. Maybe you'll end up doing them a favor and they'll realize they need new arrangments :) Love this sculpture!!

  2. Thanks Kim! Whew! In the scale of things- this prbably goes under "really petty larceny". Maybe I can do something good in the universe to make up for it!


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