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Monday, February 13, 2012

Gypsum sculpture and other surprises

My art soul is on fire! Barring a few touch-ups (but then again, maybe not) I've just completed my first real sculpture for this year. I had such fun doing this. The best of all, it was so easy!

First step was to get my hands on some POP (plaster-of-Paris) from our local chemist, which, I was later to discover, is nothing more than simple gypsum...the white powdery mix builders use to plaster ceilings....but way more expense as it turns out.

Then, using my own discretion as to ratios, (around 3/2), I mixed approximately 1kg of gypsum powder with water in a bowl and mixed it till all the lumps had disappeared. I used 'Spray and Cook' to line a 1 Lt yogurt container, poured in the mixture and left to set for around 24 hours.

The following day, I had to make a small incision into the lip of the container, just to loosen the mold slightly, and it popped out fairly easily.

Not knowing where to start, I eventually decided on the concept of the consciousness and sub-consciousness merging and simply let the tools do the work. The gypsum has a wonderful texture for carving but be warned, it dries quickly and once dry, its really impossible to work with. I'm yet to discover how brittle it becomes with curing or if it will crack under stress (which I'm pretty sure it will)....stay 'posted'!

The final product has received many and varied comments, opinions and thoughts from friends and family alike (not without a raised eyebrow as well) but every comment has given me a smile.....just because someone has bothered to look long enough or found it interesting enough to produce a thought about what they see.....a great blessing for an artst...the best!!!

Back view...reserving my comments

front view

This however, was the surprise. My future son-n-law discovered something else...which I hadn't seen.

I joined a friend and two of her students who were working with gypsum and pop bandages making sundials, cups and here....a torso for breast cancer awareness.


  1. Hi Sis! What will you be up to next! Trust a male to 'discover' the sensuous side of art :) One part of the sculpture looks like a baby just about to be born (?) It really is an interesting piece and I think you should dedicate more time to this aspect of your artistic potential! Love you lots!

  2. Thanks Col. Can't tell you how fired up I was doing it...just to watch what evolving......not to mention the reactions :o)XX

  3. Hi Sharon, I loved the back view of your sculpture - it is a curious but intriguing idea that an other self should attempt to emerge from the back of the being in the sculpture.
    Congrats on being able to work with such a difficult medium!

  4. Sis, you are really a true artest of many talents...great work. The rebirthing of ones self through a sulpture makes me wonder as to how different the other side of one will present. Love it!

  5. :o) Thank you so much Fiona. I truly didn't find it difficult at all, I just loved getting mucky.... it was as if the mess I made while doing this was necessary, not only creating but re-living and feeling a sub-conscious re-birthing...... A very profound experience for me.
    Cyn, my precious sis, vastly different methinks. X

  6. As long as we are alive, we constantly re-birth - yes, the process can be messy, but it is satisfying to use one's art to explore, work through and mark the process! Interestingly, about your future son's (perhaps facetious) comment on the base of the sculpture: perhaps unconsciously you incorporated another important aspect of the generative process! (or the animus). :o)

  7. Absolutely. That's why this has been so interesting and exciting for me ....what next? I'm starting another today, based on a dream I had a few days ago, obviously not with the same concept, but also with a bit of a "shew!" analogy. Can't wait to see what comes out.