Introduction: Yarn Covered Sculpture - "Contemplating the Universe"
This sculpture, which I call "Contemplating the Universe", has a gold colored silicone rubber figure mounted on a multicolor base. Or, as I prefer to see it, the base is part of the sculpture. Because of relative sizes, you might even say that the base is of more importance than the figure, much as the universe is bigger than either you or I.
The colorful base was first roughly outlined with twisted wire. Areas were then filled in with fiberglass window screen, using hot melt glue to stick it to the wire. That mesh surface was then covered with the mortar used for setting tiles, which does not shrink. Since the mortar penetrates the screen, you might say the base is more or less solid mortar (grout).
The base was then covered with yarn and hot melt glue, the final step being to saturate the yarn and iron it smooth using a voltage regulated, temperature controlled soldering iron with a tip I flattened out to make the ironing surface. I then sprayed the base with a matte varnish to kill some of the gloss it had. The bluish "rock" on the back side was made independently of mortar and Styrofoam chips, covered with yarn, and then glued down to the rest of the base.
After finishing the base, I drilled a hole in it for mounting the figure. Part of the aluminum armature wire protrudes from the bottom of the figure to fit into the hole, allowing the bendable figure to be easily removed for packaging purposes, should the sculpture ever need to be transported, or shipped.
Since gold is not an off-the-shelf color for silicone, I used clear silicone with gold powdered pigment. It was first built up directly with the palette knife used for mixing it. Details were added using a veterinary syringe with a curved plastic tip, used for feeding baby birds.
The colors kind of represent the universe to me. The black is a starry night. The red is volcanic activity. The green in the base is vegetation, and the bluish rock suggests water, or sky.
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