In my last blog post I left you on an artistic cliffhanger. Recall that the "Bowl of Skulls " commission was looking just a little moldy. Too much green-way too much green. I then concluded what might correct this was some rust. At the end of the post I was trying to gather my courage because I was afraid that I would totally ruin 6 weeks worth of work. You can see the finished work above. I think my initial assessment was correct and the inclusion of rust was the best thing I could have done. The rust color broke up all that moldy green and really made the skeletal parts the focus. It also helped the beautiful shape of this bowl and the decoration at the top stand out more.
A spoonful of skulls is a fun little statement but this much larger piece really stands out and is very intense. For some it will be too intense. To soften the intensity and because I love the contrast of the ugly and beautiful I decided to add some jewelry type elements in the form of beads. I stated in the previous post that the wire was both functional and decorative. I wove the wire in and around the skeletal parts for support and added beads on the wire for beauty. Kind of like life isn't it? Amidst all the ugliness of life there is always beauty to be found.
To finish the work I glued a bit of felt to the back of the bowl so that it won't mar my buyers paint job and added a clear sealer to the entire piece. Note to anyone using these products: the clear sealer will change the finish and color of both the rust and patina just a little. It makes the finish a little less rough and crumbly.
I learned alot from this project. First: large assemblages can be a logistical nightmare. But the nightmare can be overcome by patience and a little courage. Second: trust my instincts-they are almost always correct.
In summation: I really love this piece. Now to see what the buyer says: will this be the piece she thought she commissioned or will it be too intense to hang on her wall?
Your guess is as good as mine but wish me luck!