Looking Up

This piece of granite leaned against my studio for a couple of years, up high where I could see it in all weather and at all times of day.  In a recent fit of eagerness, I bit into it.  

A lot of the form, the attitude, and the feeling of the completed sculpture were already there in the raw boulder, just as I found it in nature.  I should say they came to be there over the course of a hundred or a thousand viewings, most of them made in passing while conducting other business.  But the feeling was there at the beginning, and after it had grown powerful enough, it took only subtle modification to bring it out.  

In a sense, the rock begged to be carved like this.  If it did, then I didn't actually "create" anything in carving it, did I?  That would be fine with me.

But what's going on when a rock does this kind of begging?  After all, it's only a rock.  One thing is for sure, and that is that I imagine things wherever I look. This time I imagined something in a rock.  (That's how it works for everyone, didn't you know?)   

It was especially interesting to carve out the eye socket.  Without carving any eyes at all, I wanted to make the bird appear to be training both eyes on something out there, and "Up".  

Photos by Lee Gass