Before getting started, I am happy to announce that today’s piece and the Daredevil of Norwich have been accepted into Georgetown Art Center’s “Road Trippin” Exhibition, on display from July 10 – August 15, 2015. The poster artwork features the cool work of the very talented John Self:
I love boxes. I also love taking apart boxes and joining them in ways they weren’t intended. And today’s feature is no exception. The other inspiration for this piece was the metal ladders given to me by a very nice friend. They are originally from an old tin fire engine toy. She gave that to me as well, and am still figuring out what can be done with it. Speaking of old tin toys, some old tin cars had been sitting around the studio for well over a year, and it appeared this was the time for them to shine. Here’s how the cars, boxes, and ladders all came to together at the very start:
Liking the barebones design, started to play with adding other elements, like of course…more boxes!
Having an idea of where it might go, I cut a big piece of plywood as the backing, and cut the boxes so they would better fit together. Only after all that could everything begin being attached. With a large complex piece like this, I can often spend a week before any kind of assembling occurs.
Next some paper collage was added to the interior background of some of the boxes. I had initially used this illustration of the Coronation of Queen Christina, but like Garbo who played her, she just wanted to be left alone, and I wound up using an old map of London, if memory serves me right.
Below shows the piece after many of the boxes had been attached and holes had been cut for the ladders to go through. I wasn’t crazy about the composition at this point; there were too many circles elements, and the red engine thing at the bottom seemed just like more clutter…
Got rid of the red engine, and added a little door knob, which seemed to help, but still not quite there…
So I turned to an old friend…my handy post office mailbox doors!
The mailbox door really help break up the circular bits. Also added ome gold picture frame parts throughout the piece.
After that, it was a matter of attaching all the stray bits.
The name of this piece is Red Ladder Rise. It is about 32 x 22 x 6 inches and hangs on the wall.