The Back Story
This installation was made for the garden of a neighbor who travels the world collecting and teaching about exotic plants. He has thereby created an amazing garden at his home in Indianola WA. We have worked together on several projects over the years. He was interested in a series of posts for installation in his garden. He was interested in evoking some of the spirit of the Janseung (a type of totem-like carving from Korea) that he has encountered in his travels. Starting at this point I began to research and draw.
This project is intended to have some of the whimsical aspects of Janseung merged with some southern Salish Sea and coastal Alaskan influence. I chose second-growth Red Cedar for the project. The Cedar is readily available and locally sourced, though often dismissed as a low grade material for carving. The cedar was the perfect choice for this project consisting of relatively simple, but large scale, sculptures.
Each post is set back into the garden with the bases mostly hidden by the lower story of growth. The posts are mostly only able to be seen individually or with glimpses of another post in the background. Each post reveals itself in unexpected ways as you move around this hidden paradise.
I enlisted the help of Spencer West to help carve and with the sourcing, milling prepping, install and some of the carving. He is an accomplished timber framer and equipped with the tools to work with large logs. Spencer was a great asset to the project.
Images of the Carving Process
Below are some progression pictures of the carving of the Tentacle. The pictures depict Spencer’s rough out, secondly, refining the curves, and adding the details in my studio.
Dave Meyers of Myorian Studios in Indianola also helped on the project. Dave manufactured all the structural elements that hold up the posts. The parts of this project were all made by Indianola artists.
Thanks to: Camas West Spencer West, Dave Meyers, Sammy Hughes, and the best wife a guy could have, Joanne.