Archive for the SCULPTURE Category

The house that wasn’t there

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART VIDEOS, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on August 11, 2010 by echostains

Abandoned houses have always struck me as rather sad.   Houses that are half torn down – even sadder, as if the inner secret life has been exposed to the elements and all eyes.  To see the layers of wallpaper ripped and torn, each surface revealing a past time, a past birthday and celebration in the house’s history, then to see the building in it’s final death throes is quite disturbing to me.

Sculptor Rachel Whiteread  (b. London UK 1963) is famous for her exploration of the negative space surrounding objects. In 1993 she won the Turner Prize for her exhibit ‘House’, a concrete cast of the inside of a Victorian terrace house: the negative space.  The house was the last standing in the street and has since been demolished.    ‘House caused a lot of controversy at the time and attracted lots of media attention.  Whiteread explains how she felt about the piece and some of the problems she encountered.

video from illuminationstv Thanks!


The Battle for Trafalgar begins (fourth plinth)

Posted in ART, DESIGN, exhibitions, SCULPTURE with tags , , , , on July 20, 2010 by echostains

Yonka Shonibare's Nelson ship

As I wrote previously in this post, Yinka Shonbare’s Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle occupies the fourth plinth at moment in Trafalgar Square London UK.  Six other artist have been shortlisted and shall battle it out for the prestigious fourth plinth place when Shonibare has vacated it.  Who shall be the victor?

Katherina Fritsch

Among the artist are British artists Hew Locke and Brian Griffiths.  They shall compete against duos Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla, Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset.  Katherina Fritsch and Mariele Neudecker have also made proposals.

I wrote a post featuring Fritsch’s work a while ago (seen here).  The other artists work, I am unfamiliar with but the people shall decide whose work shall go up in time for the  2012 Olympics.  miniature versions of the aforementioned artist’s work shall be displayed in the crypt of nearby St Martin’s in the field church and all shall be a sculpture!  Read all about this exciting prospect here!

Boneshaker Brian Griffiths

One of the artists (Brian Griffiths) has been described as a’ junk shop Viking’ which sounds eclectic and quirky enough to peak my interest.  Here’s some of his work at the Saatchi Gallery.

Dust to Dust sculpture Hew Locke

Edinburgh born artist Hew Locke’s work looks pretty interesting.  Read a short description of the all the artist work here

Hew Locke work here and in this gallery.  Fritsch image from here Shonibare image from here

Valley of the Broken Dolls

Posted in ART, ART VIDEOS, LIVING IN THE PAST: NOSTALGIA, MY ALTERED ART BOOK PAGES, SCULPTURE with tags , , , , , on June 25, 2010 by echostains

GEM (truly outrageous) still beloved by my daughter

Inspired by artistatthexit0′ s latest post about the dolls he has found in the river, made me think about artist’s who use the doll in their work.  Of course Hans Bellmer and Cindy Sherman were the first artists I thought of.  Surrealist photographer Hans Bellmer (b.Germany 1902 – 1950)  used broken doll parts in a fetish like fashion to invoke disturbing ideas.

Bellmer doll

He  first sent these to the  Nazi party as a protest against their obsession with the perfect body.   He posed the dolls in mutilated, unaturalistic ways.  There’s a great article about this artist here.  The film below Le Jeux de la Poupee featuring Bellmer’s work is not for the faint hearted.  This film was made in 1940s, but I don’t know who the music is by.

Cindy Sherman (b.1954 New York USA) uses self photography to address issues about the roles of women in the world, and as artists.  This short film sees Sherman as a cutout doll with cut out clothes.  I think it ‘s such a clever film, making Sherman completely 2D – surreal as she gets to choose the outfits she will wear instead of them being chosen for her!

Here’s an artist who works with dolls and altered book.  Karen Hatzigeorgiou puts her dolls into her books literally!  All her dolls are found objects and she sells the finished work.

assemblage found arm

Bellmer doll from here Cindy Sherman video from “artpopulus and Bellmer video from artpopulus

assemblage with found object

Cheesy Art

Posted in ART, ART VIDEOS, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on June 18, 2010 by echostains

Theres quite a few artists that work with dairy products like butter and cheese.  this piece of art was created for the Great British Cheese Festival in Cardiff.  The sculpture is of Cardiff Castle and this time-lapse video shows how it was done.  I suppose the cheese must have to be kept at a certain temperature to make it workable.

The sculpture by the way is made of Welsh cheese of course and I should imagine the cows in the background are Welsh also….. though it’s hard to make it out 🙂

Video by BritishCheeseFest

Keeping an Eye on Art

Posted in ART, SCULPTURE with tags , , on June 8, 2010 by echostains

The eye Chicago illnois

Keep your eyes open in July for this sculpture!  Actually, you won’t be able to miss it:  this gigantic eyeball sculpture shall go on display at Pritzker Park Chicago, Illinois. The Three dimensional sculpture by Tony Tasset goes on display in the park on July 7th until October 31st (Halloween) this year.

The blue iris was the artist’s choice as he has blue eyes himself.  He has chosen the eye because it has always been an important symbol in Egypt. The artist is hoping that the eye will enhance the space and make it more interesting.  He has made a smaller similar symbol in a St Louis park, Missouri.

The giant eye will be a major talking point (the  cost goes into six figures..).  People will either love it or hate it.  The artist acknowledges that some will find the eye creepy –  he calls it a ‘surrealist-noir”.  I am put in mind of the surrealist film Un Chien Andalou  by Luis Buñuel (Writer/Director).  This is a famous film where the opening scene shows a woman’s eye being cut by a razor.  There is also something about the sculpture which makes me think of surrealist Rene Magritte – just the sort of incongruous kind of thing he would do if he’d been a sculptor.

What do we think about it? Love, Hate or just indifferent?  Forgot to add ‘like’…that’s my opinion:)

image  and more info here
Beautiful egyptian eye image available from  here
Laumeiere Sculpture Park image here 

Weaver of webs Louise Borgeois

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on June 2, 2010 by echostains

Last week I wrote about French-born American Abstract expressionist sculptor Louise Bourgeois and featured her Mamam in my post about the Tate Modern.   She is very well-known for her gigantic spiders:_

The Spider is an ode to my mother,” Louise Bourgeois once said. “She was my best friend. Like a spider, my mother was a weaver… Like spiders, my mother was very clever. Spiders are friendly presences… spiders are helpful and protective, just like my mother.”

louise_bourgeois eye to eye 1970

 Sadly, Bourgeois died at the age of 98 on Monday. I find it amazing that this tiny woman was so prolific and still working at nearly 100 years of age!  She was born in Paris in 1911 to tapestry restorers and when she later moved to New York, she found the art scene was totally dominated by men.  Her husband was critic Robert Goldwater.


Hers was a passionate personality, she was filled with darkness, outrage and anger over her father’s affair with her governess.  She translated these emotions into her art.  Bourgeois became famous and popular when she was in her 70’s when she had her first major exhibition.

Her work is not to everyone’s taste, and some have found it disturbing, but I find it dark interesting with many layers.  Through her work she translates childhood trauma and sexuality.   Her art is always linked with the past and very emotional.   In this short film she says that her emotions are inappropriate to her size – that they are her ‘demons’.  Her demons have turned out to be her lifetimes work and she has made a major contribution to sculpture as a media.

Arch of hysteria

 There is a lovely obituary in the Telegraph

There is a lovely article about her here and many videos about her work on YouTube

Maman image from here, Louise Bourgeois pic from here arch of hysteria here

Where do I go? Down the River of course!

Posted in ART, Echostains Blog Spotlight, SCULPTURE with tags , , , , , on May 20, 2010 by echostains


Billy Childish is just one of the artists featured on my blog

Billy Childish is just one of the artists featured on my blog


Anyone who already reads my blog will find it an eclectic mix of mostly art’s based media.  I have many interests, which I haven’t even put into my blog.  – music for example.  That would take up a whole other blog.  But where do I go to in Blogland when I want to get away from it all and have a good time? If you look at my Blog roll you will see at a glance.  But why do I go to these blogs?   Why do I like them?  What do I get from them? 


Echostains Blog Spotlight

Echostains Blog Spotlight


 As hinted at a few weeks ago, I shall be spotlighting these blogs every now and again by interviewing their owners (if they are willing, there’s no obligation).  If you have been reading my blog regularly you will know that I don’t accept awards.  I’ve nothing against them – I am rewarded by people who take the time to read my blog daily and thoughtfully comment.  The Echostains Blog Spotlight is the nearest I get to giving an award.  I hope that you will enjoy these blogs as much as I do! 

The first spotlight is on Albertus from artistatexit0  I can’t remember how I stumbled upon this blog – but I’m so glad I did!  The link was through assemblage and artists who work with assembling objects.  However, Al’s work is much more than this.  I like to go there to see what he has been up to on the River – what he has found and more importantly – what he has done with them.  His scuptures are unusual and ephemeral – here today and gone tomorrow, washed away by the river.  They are born from the river – and they die by the river.   Luckily for us, he has documented their existance with a fantastic photo collection!
1.  Why is your blog thus entitled?

My blog derives its title from the literal highway exit number that I use to arrive at the Falls of the Ohio State Park in Clarksville, Indiana which is across from my home in Louisville, Kentucky.  I also like its existential overtones and it sounds slightly absurd to me.


Ohio River map

Ohio River map


 2.  What is your blog about and what information do you hope to get across?

After one year, I’m still discovering what the riverblog is all about through this sense for place.  Generally, it concerns itself with creativity and the natural environment of which we are a part.  I believe that art has survival value in life (see Ellen Dissanayake) and I feel by rediscovering our own innate creativity in all its forms that we can reconnect to the planet that sustains us.  This blog is my own story and attempt to forge this reconciliation.


 3. Whats the most exciting thing you have found in the river – and why?

Personally, the most exciting “thing” I have found in the river is myself!  I know this sounds odd and perhaps egotistical, but the discovery was a renewed sense of my purpose and role as an artist in this context.  To further affirm this, I once found a sign fragment that literally had my name on it.  I entitled that artifact, “I Found Al by the Side of the River” and its still one of my prize possessions.  My son Michael was with me and snapped my photograph at the moment of discovery.  A picture of it is in my “Found Signs and Paintings Collection”.

(You knew then that you were indeed in sinc with that river:)  I shall check that pic out!)



 4. How did your fascination start with the river and its contents?

I have been lucky to have lived near bodies of fresh water.  For me, the Ohio River was already in my proverbial back yard.  My art has been informed by both natural and cultural history.  Our material culture deposited in the river represents the journey we all take through life.  I also drink this water.

 5. Why did you start your blog?

I had been looking for a format that allowed me to provide a better relational sense for what I’m experimenting with at the river.  Through the blog, I can use whatever talents I have with words and images to talk about art in the context of life.  I now view weblogs as a medium in their own right.  Putting my art on the web helped to relieve it from the isolation of the gallery.  I also have a passion for this sense of place that is the Falls of the Ohio that I wanted to share with a wider world.



polystyrenus-with-fish. image courtesy of


 6. What would you most like to find in the river and why?

What I would like most to find is no trash in the water.  Should this condition occur, I would then feel that our species is evolving and placing a priority on aesthetic issues like clean water which truly enhances life in the most meaningful way.  I also would like to find an artifact that proves Prince Madoc was here just to say that recorded history isn’t all its cracked up to be.

(lol! but a lovely sentiment Al)

 7. Whats’ your best adventure concerning the river?

There are simply too many to list.  I do recall, however, an early incident in the park that felt transcendental like the “St. Francis in Ecstasy” by Giovanni Bellini in the Frick Collection of New York.  I was hiking on the ancient fossil beds during the heat of summer and I was looking towards the skyline of a contemporary city and feeling a sublime sense for being located at this particular space and time.  When I looked at my hands I was lacking stigmata and more than likely was suffering from some slight dehydration! 

 8. If you could advertise your blog on a billboard – what would it say?

Usually, I’m not fond of billboards.  We already live in a wilderness of signs.


Louisville from the Falls,  image courtesy of http://artistatexit0.wordpress

Louisville from the Falls, image courtesy of http://artistatexit0.wordpress


 9.  Anything exciting planned for the future of your blog?

I have a lot of unpublished content that I could scan and include on the riverblog.  I have been with this project since 2003 and I like the idea of moving back and forth through time in a nonlinear way.  Only I know when these events happened as though that really mattered to most people. Most of my Styrofoam sculptures no longer exist and so these other images are my only surviving documents. I also like the idea of speaking more through an invented character and then there’s also the possibility of embedding video clips.  I   have more Collections pages to add…so there’s much that could still occur whether this qualifies as exciting I leave to you.

(I love these characters!  They are an added bonus!  The video clips would be fantastic, people could get a real sense of the river rushing and share the excitement of your discoveries!!  Hope you go with this!)






image by kind  courtesy of

image by kind courtesy of



10 Why should people visit your blog?

Why indeed?  I hope that most conscientious bloggers ask themselves this question.  I hope people will enjoy what I do because it’s fun, interesting, frequently absurd, and just doesn’t hold a mirror up to the world decrying it, but offers up a little hope for it. You tell me Lynda since you initiated this interview!

(I have Al, it’s at the top:)   Some really interesting answers there – thank you!)



Watch out for more interviews from my Blogrollers:)  Questions shall be tailored towards the blogs subject  matter)

Map from here