Archive for willard wigan

Turning over a new leaf – or two

Posted in ART, ART VIDEOS, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on March 15, 2012 by echostains

It’s about time we had some more unusual art on here.  A while ago I posted about  artist Willard WiganWillard Wigan sculpture who micro sculptures can only be viewed through a microscope (tiny worlds between heartbeats)  I contrasted the micro art with the work of Hyperrealist sculptor Ron Meuck whose gigantic realistic sculptures have a unerving quality about them.

A new art form has been emerging from China over the last few years.  The process called leaf carving, involves careful precision, as the artist scrapes the outer layers of the leaf, exposing an almost transparent surface. The leaf veins are left intact to give stability to the sculpture.

The leaves preferred by artists are from the Chinar tree, which is native to India, China and Pakistan.  The leaves are considered to have ‘lucky’ qualities and resemble maple leaves and are best suited for sculpting owing to the distribution of their veins.

Each carving can take months of careful work.  But once finished, preserved and framed, the finished art should last decades.

From minute leaf sculpture to these 3D leaf sculptures.  the news may be a couple of years old, but it’s news to me:-)  Apparently a mystery artist  left leaf sculptures along the water of Leith, Edinburgh in the autumn of 2010. One of the figures was dressed in green wellies,and a flat cap.  Next to it,  two charming leaf children clung to the railings.

The Leith river seems to have provided inspiration for Anthony Gormley too.  You would think that  life-sized cast iron  figures would last a little longer than leaf ones, but two of Gormley’s six figures apparently fell victim to the Scottish and were pushed over by heavy tide.

Art officials have insisted that the figures were ‘designed to be tipped over’  Art lovers thought the sculptures had been stolen. 

Leith locals had taken the sculptures to their hearts, donning them with bikinis, Y-fronts and even a MacDonald’s uniform!



Leaf sculpture video from hldx9 with thanks

Willard Wigan sculpture image from here

Ron Mueck image from here

Leaf sculpture at Leif image from here

Anthony Gormley’s river sculpture images from here

Art makes a Point

Posted in ART, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on August 13, 2010 by echostains


such precision!

A while ago I featured the miniscule art by Micro sculptor Willard Wigan who sculpts within the eye of a needle (‘Tiny worlds between heartbeats’ post).  Brazilian artist Dalton Ghetti sculpts using the lead of a pencil as his media.  The artist is already a carpenter in his own right, but for his micro sculpture he uses some more unusual tools, including a sewing needle and razor blade.

How does he do this?

Some of the sculptures have taken years and a lot of patience owing to the fragile nature of the graphite media.  But as you can imagine a lot of them break whilst he is working on them.  This must be so frustrating and disheartening for the artist, yet still he carries on.  What dedication and what great sculpture!

I LOVE this one


More about him and more pics here

See the artists alphabet carvings here

Tiny Worlds between heartbeats

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, DESIGN, SCULPTURE with tags , , , on April 7, 2010 by echostains

Peter Pan

A gruelling week begins.  Courses to go on.  Course which take up most of the day.  After the course, which will end around 8PM, I shall be off with my husband for a bite to eat and a few drinks.  So if the posts for the next few days are rather short – that’s the reason why 🙂

Ron Mueck 'mask'

There’s some clever people around (just look at those women in art films).  Most of them of course come on my blog 🙂   We’ve looked at large sculptures by artists like Ron Mueck, whose work is disconcertingly colossal.  But there are what is known as ‘Micro sculptors.  Willard Wigan is one of them.  His teeny sculptures like the ones done  in the eye of a needle or on the head of a pin are absolutely amazing!  Some can’t even be seen with the naked eye.

Willard Wigan

The artist paints  his sculpture with the hair of a dead fly!!  He has also used his own eyelash.  What patience and what a steady hand he must have!  Born in 1957 Birmingham UK, Wigan struggled at school and diverted himself by making miniscule art.

“It began when I was five years old,” says Willard. “I started making houses for ants because I thought they needed somewhere to live. Then I made them shoes and hats. It was a fantasy world I escaped to where my dyslexia didn’t hold me back and my teachers couldn’t criticise me. That’s how my career as a micro-sculptor began.”

ship in a pinhead

Wigan’s art has been referred to as ‘the eighth wonder of the world’ – and it’s no wonder really.  He has to put himself into a meditative state in order sculpt these tiny works of art, and works between pulse beats to avoid hand tremors.

statue of Liberty Willard Wigan

The artist has been approached by a film company to make a film of his life story.   I for one would love to watch this!  He  has received an MBE from Prince Charles for his contribution to art.  this short video shows Wigan’s tribute to President Obama:_

Willard Wigan’s website HERE

There are lots of videos about this interesting artist on YouTube here