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Thursday, May 2, 2019
Art Behind the Scenes - Last Remnants of Man (Artist Grey Cross)
"Last Remnants of Man" was one of the most depressing pieces I've ever created. The piece was part of a climate change series, so right away the subject reflects a somber mood. I think because I was born and raised on an island in the Atlantic, the use of a ship and a lighthouse made it all the more gloomy for me.
The piece uses a 30" long piece of deadwood attached to a 2' x 4" tile with a matching plinth base. The concept for the piece was an archaeological dig on a long dead planet Earth, bereft of water. The deadwood looked remarkably like strata of rock.
The lighthouse was actually part of a ceramic Christmas decoration. It came attached to a small pilot house and the whole thing was painted in peppermint candy stripes.I'd bought it at a flea market for $1.99 and it had been hanging around the studio for several months. Using a screwdriver and a hammer, I hit it in just the right place to sheer off the pilot house, leaving just the lighthouse.
The small tug boat was plastic and it was part of a huge box of old plastic ship models I'd bought and used for some still life art. I bought the whole box of 10 old ships for $10. They were in bad shape, some were missing parts, others had broken or missing pieces. But I got more than my $10 back from the investment.
Put together they formed the perfect concept for an archaeological dig far in the future. Using foaming glue I attached them in such a way that they looked like they were part of the rock. Using a metallic color scheme I was able to bring them together in a way that made them look like they were all one.
The final touch was the use of real beach sand on the tile surface.
The whole sculpture took about 10 days to complete and still sits in the studio as part of the Scenes From an Ecological Wasteland climate series.
For me, one of the best parts of this sculpture is that it approaches a solemn subject as climate change with beauty rather than ugliness. In fact when people view it, they are so intrigued by it that they don't realize until I tell them that its a message on climate change. I feel this is crucial to getting people to look at art with a message they may not like. If they look first and judge second then my job as an art activist is done.
Behind the Scenes is a look at the stories and methods behind the art. If you have a piece of art that you would like to talk about, let us know! We'd be happy to share your stories.