I'm deep in the journey of making a sculptural object, and I'd like to get it up here for all of you.
About a year ago I was invited to donate a piece made from a very specific piece of trash: an old hubcap. My old friend Boris Bally had put them on to me. The organization, Landfillart.org, was sending artists re-chromed trashed hubcaps to turn into art and send back. The resulting exhibition and publication would raise awareness about recycling (not that recycling needs much more awareness nowadays, but a great cause nevertheless).
My stipulation was two-fold: that the hubcap be from as old a car as possible, and that it not be re-chromed. Ken Marquis, the orchestrator of this project (now grown to a whopping 1,041 artists worldwide!) personally sent me his oldest hubcap. What a beauty.
I'm off and running...
The old V8 hubcap - I'm guessing about 1939?
What a logo. The deepness of the bowl allows me to make an interior environment. I don't want to lose the logo, so that'll have to be part of the design.
Luckily my brother is a big-time master electrician on Broadway - I've been saving these follow-spot lenses he gave me for about 20 years, using them as the opportunity presents. Thanks, Mike!
Look at this fit. The dome is even the same curvature as the lens. Time to get cutting.
I've designed the shape to be cut away. This'll be tough work, as I'm dealing not only with two pieces (the silver decorative cap and the underlying heavy steel hubcap), but both these pieces are curved. I've also decided to flip the orientation of the piece, so the logo will essentially read as an "A".
Ready to cut.
The outer cap is fairly straight-forward.
The main cap - is not. No saws are up to it, so it has to be ground away.
Back indoors after the grinding.
After choosing a title, I set about etching it into heavy brass and designing it to arch over the opening I've cut in the cap.
Sawing it out.
The tabs that were cut on the bottom are bent around to create 'eyes' through which a heavy wire will run. Only the center tab remains straight, to go through the hubcap itself.
Ready to mount.
Wired into place. Notice the tabs I'd left on the silver cap are now curled back to hold more wire around the circumference of the lens.
Three of these wires will pierce the hubcap and lock the lens in place.
Next week: The interior assembly comes together, centerpieced with another of my new large fused-glass images.