HOW I MAKE THE WIRE SCULPTURES
Each of my wire sculptures is an original artwork, hand crafted from stainless steel wire. Each is numbered, dated, and signed.
The sculptures are based on my gesture drawings of dancers in motion (examples below).
For each drawing I make a kind of maquette: I photograph the drawing, then scale and print it onto paper which is tacked onto a wood board. I insert small brads to act as wire guides and then wind string around the brads, to find a path which follows the line of the drawing. Some editing takes place with two criteria in mind: the sculpture must use only one strand of wire and have structural integrity.
Once I find a possible solution, I restring the maquette with wire. When I remove the wire (sproing!). I glue the unruly mess of wire onto a wood block* and refashion it into the final form.
Finally, the wire is spray painted black and the wood base is sanded and hand painted.
* I cut the wood from a 90 foot Norway spruce planted on the my property by former owner, sea captain Jeremiah Mayo, in about 1845. The tree fell during a freak December storm a few years ago. I had the tree cut into boarding by the Moony brothers of Truro using their portable sawmill.
THE EVOLUTION OF MY WIRE SCULPTURES
In 2016 I had another opportunity to sit in on an Academy dance class. This time I did hundreds of rapid gesture sketches of the dancers in motion, moving my ball point pen over the surface of the paper in a continuous motion. Most were unintelligible. But some evoked dance moves. This got me thinking, how could I use those sketches?
Now, I collect cookie cutters and like to bake cookies. And I had previously made a few of my own cutters from aluminum flashing of some dancing figures I had photographed in 2003. And I used those home made cutters to make dancer cookies for some art openings at the Cape Cod Museum of Art.
In 2013 I had injured my shoulder and until it was repaired I made about 75 dancer "cookie cutters" from my 2002 dancer photographs and used them to make a series of shallow dancer reliefs.
So, looking at my 2016 dancer gesture sketches, I thought about those cookie cutters. And it came to me that I might use wire in place of the aluminum flashing to duplicate the gesture sketches.