Saturday, November 28, 2015

How long did it take you to make THAT?

Dear Art Lover,
Perhaps one of the most common questions artists get
asked is, “How long did it take you to make that?” Discussions among artists usually result in the ultimate response, “My entire life: Each thing I ever learned became the foundation of each new work.”
     This is hardly fulfilling to the onlooker, though, is it? He just wanted a simple answer to satisfy a curiosity, not really the whole truth.
     I hate this question because I have no easy answer. Most of the problem lies in that I rarely work on one piece at a time. And, no, I do not punch a time clock with each changing task or project. The other problem is that there is a difference between how long it REALLY takes to create a work of art and how long it takes just to EXECUTE the idea. For me, it happens in the brain for some indefinite amount of time, often longer than it takes to paint or even sculpt the baby.

     However, I decided to take a stab at some time frames and hope to satisfy some curiosity. As smarts would have it, these works are still available at the time of this writing. Just contact me if you would like to make one or more yours (or give as a gift). Subtle, huh?

     And please do not forget to visit the galleries who exhibit my work: See Don Elliott and Chuck at The Franklin Barry Gallery in Indianapolis and Mark Palmerton in Norman, Oklahoma, at The Crucible Bronze Foundry and Gallery.

Thank you for your interest!

Pelican Lips: Started carving in March 2006,
after I had already begun the Lips Series of stone carvings.
Finished: August 2006
Available: $3000.

The Lookout started out in the Spring of 1999 as “Jennifer,” a full-standing 3-d figure half-life-size, modeled from life. In those days, in order to jumpstart my career, I was casting two bronzes at once in each edition: one for a gallery and the other for my own exhibitions. However, the foundry in Bastrop, Texas, did a terrible job on the mold and wax work. When I called to make an appointment to proof the wax, I was told that they had already begun the ceramic slurry mold and it was too late! The result was that one bronze had a much-distorted thumb and a few other things that made me unhappy. I was so new to the sculpting business that I did not know I could refuse such work.
It was not until 2007 that I decided to cut her up and keep what I liked about her. I created a new composition, casting swirly fabric designs and then had them welding onto the existing figure. My new foundry needed a couple of months for this and John and I did the finishing work for this one-of-a-kind bronze. “Jennifer” became a wall-hanging as The :Lookout. So… eight years in the making? She is available for only $5,200.
Here is a convenient price list for all the available sculptures:

Stairway to Heaven, in Texas awaiting a new home
Then you have Stairway to Heaven, an angel (and a stairway!) carved out of a PINK limestone from Texas. I started March 8, 2011 and finished in October 2011. During that same summer, I also finished the marble “Gymnast” and the writing and editing of my book, “My Life as a Street Painter in Florence, Italy” when I spent about two months living with my pregnant sister while her husband was in Afghanistan. Do you see the problem about “how long did that take you?”
Stairway to Heaven, is available for $900, if you do not mind the natural patina she has developed. Message me for more information, please.
Here is a convenient price list for all the available sculptures:

Comfort is a sculpture I made in clay [terra-cotta] that took about 2-3 days. I did not use models for this work.
And while the Web page says that I made a mold of this for a future bronze edition, I do not think that I ever did it, as life got in the way. So this is a unique piece. $1,200.
Here is a convenient price list for all the available sculptures:

Here I am with my charcoal drawing of a gesso (plaster) portrait sculpture. The gesso is a copy of the famous Italian sculptor Donatello's portrait of the banker of the Medici family, Niccolò da Uzzano. The original terra-cotta portrait sculpture is in the collection of the Bargello Museum in Florence, Italy.
For this project, I used the sight-size method of drawing [which means that all observations and judgements are made from about 2 meters from the art and LOTS of pacing the floor]. If you would like to learn more about sight-size, as well as see the finished artwork, click on the link below.
This work took me on average five hours, six days per week for about ten weeks. Niccolò is available for only $2600, or giclée reproductions are available for less than $500.
and check out the sizes and prices for the high quality reproductions here:

     Birds of Paradise probably took me two-to-three afternoons, between stone carving times: $575 for the pair 12 x 12 inch thick-gallery-wrapped canvas with metallic paint.

Happy, happy birthday(s) to my Aunt Nancy and my beautiful friend Kumiko Suzuki!
Thank you.



~ Kelly Borsheim, sculptor, painter, writer, teacher


Studio Zanne said...

Beautiful work, Kelly! And I enjoyed your post. Greetings from Montana. -Zanne

Kelly Borsheim said...

Wow, thanks S'zanne... great to hear from you again. Montana is a long way from Austin! I always admired your paintings as well.
I hope you are enjoying the holiday weekend.
Greetings from Italy.