We found a stump of a cypress tree washed up on our beach one morning. Its close-set branches had been cut off. The longer we looked at it, the more it appeared like a club, bristling with lethal knobs (see photo below). It laid around our garden for a few years, with the bark gradually sloughing off, and an idea germinated. It was so heavy that one couldn’t pick it up by its narrow end and wield it like a war club, but perhaps a mythical giant warrior could’ve done so. Each of the cut-off branches might have been decorated with the faces of the enemies he’d slaughtered with it.
Research resulted in a collection of images of early-medieval warriors from Norse carvings, ancient Roman coins, and tapestries. We rounded off the cut ends of the branches and used oil paint to decorate them with the faces. The whole was then polyurethaned to bring out the delicate color and texture of the wood.
Click on photos to enlarge.
Sculpture by Dave and Sharynne Wilder – cypress stump, oil paint, and polyurethane; mahogany and teak base.
Part of our sculpture “Conflict Series.”
Lower photo copyright ©2014 by Katrin Grimm. All rights reserved.
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