- Category: Small and Tall
Sometimes my small bronzes are so exciting to me, that I want to see them as huge sculptures.
Six to grow was one of those pieces. After studying the small sculpture, I hired a welder, told him what I had in mind, and we discussed the size it would eventually become.
We purchased several large sheets of 14 guage half hard red brass and went to work. We worked in my backyard using templates made of heavy duty butcher paper. Each part was cut from the brass; folded, bent and tacked together using my gas welder. Fortunately, the welder had very strong hands and arms. While I orchestrated, he performed magic with the brass pieces.
We worked for about two weeks to complete the welding, and his job was finished.
I sprayed some ferric nitrate liquid chemical on the surface until it became the color that spoke to me. After washing the surface with water, I reheated the sculpture and painted a hard carnuba wax on the surface. When the wax was cool, I buffed.
The piece was eight feet tall and I put it into a two-woman show in a bank in the middle of Beverly Hills. The other woman was Sister Mary Corita, a well-known seragraph artist. We had many successful sales and when the show was over, I was called by phone to come and collect my large 8-foot piece.
With no thought in mind, I went to collect the piece without a truck. Stumped, I looked the piece over and realized it was sitting on a wooden board with wheels. A rope was attached to the board, so a light bulb went off in my head, and I remembered that at the corner of Wilshire Blvd and Beverly Drive, in the heart of Beverly Hills, stood a large Union Bank building. So, in my inimitable style I decided to put my sculpture in the gutter of Wilshire Blvd and pull it to Beverly Drive. I was near Santa Monica Blvd.
With no other thought in mind, completely oblivious to traffic and people, I proudly marched down the gutter to the bank. Parking my sculpture in the gutter, I went inside the bank, spoke to the head honchos about leaving it on display for a while. They came out, officially, inspected the sculpture and nodded approval. Shaking hands, smiling and feeling pleased with myself, I left my name and phone number for them to contact me when they needed the space.
About four months later, they called with the information that the space was needed. Well, if it worked the first time, I could cross the street to a Glendale Federal Savings and Loan Bank and go through the same routine. Which I did, successfully.
A few months later, the Glendale Federal Savings people called and asked if they could purchase the sculpture. Hallelejujah! It went to its permanent home in Riverside, California in 1973.
In rethinking the story, I laugh at my naivete and realize that in today's culture, it would not be acceptable to just show up with a huge sculpture for them to display.
I've truly had a colorful life!