After a couple days in the kiln/annealer with me adding glass to the bird in between, and the form wanting to pull away from the mould, I decided it was finished. The following images are not, by any means, professional, well-lit or anything like that. They just serve as documentation for now, and a quick way for me to get them up online 🙂
The ‘hollow’ inside view was gradually built up during the actual firing stage. I kept temperatures fairly low to allow the glass to just tack fuse to itself, but keep its crystalline, sugary structure. Which gives it the appearance of frosty snow-ice. And perhaps lends a mummified carcass look to the bird…?
Here’s another close-up detail of the ‘inside’ of the Raven. Part of the concept being; as the glaciers melt away, and the natural environments erode, how does this impact migratory birds? How does this impact Iceland itself? Following excerpt from Scientific American: Iceland loses about 11 billion tons of ice per year. The glacier Sólheimajökull (aka the incredible shrinking glacier), a tongue of ice reaching toward Iceland’s southeast coast, has become an apologue of climate change in recent years: Retreating an average of one Olympic pool-length every year for the past two decades due to climbing temperatures, warming ocean currents and disrupted seasons.
A generation from now there may not be enough water to drive turbines or slake a nation’s thirst.
Dust storms will swirl over dry glacier beds while huge expanses of exposed earth erode.
This work has everything to do with the Kickstarter campaign I ran last year. That and my continued growing concern of the seeming increase in the destruction of pristine environments and the beautiful life dependant upon them.
Just last week an activist from Norway ( @trashplanet_norway) left a comment on an image I posted to Instagram. Her concern over styrofoam being level 10 on the environmental pollution scale, she spoke to me of her anguish over styrofoam being literally, “…everywhere you look!” Later she tagged me in an image showing a sea shore riddled with this styrofoam (insulation) that birds and sea life eat, and eventually die from. 😦
The ravens I am constructing, along with other animal forms (arctic fox) address these growing concerns/issues. I am constructing armatures to build clay or other refractory moulds from. I intend to use these moulds to ‘slump’ or ‘drape’ glass over, forming the animals’ ‘skin’ that will then have photographic glass print-outs fused onto them. Images I took while traveling around Iceland in 2012, 15 and images from my upcoming artist residency October 2016 thru January 2017, as well as my time volunteering with the Arctic Fox Centre in the Westfjords. What will happen to these animals when their environments are entirely over-run and destroyed by Human made pollutants? When do these sad, horrible truths become relevant enough for people to act on them, and change the way they engage with the world, and our shared environment?