PROPHET

© JOHN FANSMITH 2017

PROPHET, like WATCHER OF THE NIGHT and HARBINGER, is part of my summer flirtation with Hooded Figures. The title to PROPHET was not planned but rather my first reaction to the completed piece – the facial expression and “body language” expressing my mental image of what a Prophet would, or should, look like. Hand built and raku fired paper clay. 6 ½” x 2” x 2”.

XOLOTL

© JOHN FANSMITH 2017

In the Aztec religion Xolotl was a powerful and fearsome figure, the twin to Quetzalcoatl and Lord of the West who guarded the Sun as it journeyed through the night. My XOLOTL, while inspired by the Aztec deity, cannot be described as “fearsome”, unless, of course, you happen to be terrified of garden gnomes. Hand built of paper clay, glazed and fired to Cone 6. 8 ½” x 5” x  4”.

 

Watcher of the Night

(C) JOHN FANSMITH 2017

From the earliest days until the present, in myth, legend and story, the hooded figure has been seen as a figure of mystery, a concealed identity and thus a source of apprehension. Only when the hood is thrown back and the identity revealed does apprehension turn to fear – or relief.  Throughout the summer I’m going to be exploring the hooded figure in a number of different contexts, using individual and groupings as well as a variety of different materials and surface treatments. WATCHER OF THE NIGHT is hand built and raku fired paper clay. 7” x 2 ½” x 3”.

 

 

EDEN’S END

(C) JOHN FANSMITH 2017

EDEN’S END, drawing on the Biblical imagery of the Book of Genesis, while appearing to be hammered metal, in fact, consists of four pieces of hand built and raku fired stoneware secured to a piece of split and hand sanded cherry, by wooden dowels and epoxy sculpt. The legs are of various lengths to accommodate the unevenness of the base. 7 ½”H x 19”W x 7”D.

STONEHENGE DECONSTRUCTED: THEORY #3 – BLOOD SACRIFICE

(C) JOHN FANSMITH 2017

BLOOD SACRIFICE, the third in the STONEHENGE DECONSTRUCTED Series posits a different and darker interpretation than the celebratory themes of the first two, WINTER SOLSTICE and VERNAL EQUINOX, that Stonehenge was not always a place of joyous welcome. In BLOOD SACRIFICE the palette is darker and the shapes curve inward and down. Hand built and raku fired paper clay. 7” W/D x 9”H.

MASK #9: THE GOLDEN YEARS

(C) JOHN FANSMITH 2017

When I started the MASK Series the pieces were generic and conceptual, more an investigation into the cultural universality of Masks than an expression of any particular idea; I wasn’t doing commentary, just having some fun with paper clay and Raku. However, things evolve, and the more recent ones, such as MASK #9: THE GOLDEN YEARS, through the facial expressions and palette do try to  say something. Technically, MASK #9: THE GOLDEN YEARS is a mixed media piece combining hand built and raku fired paper clay with glass beads for the eyes. Wall hung, 9” x 7” x 2 ½’.