||In the sculptor's words...
When I first started sculpting, some of the first figures I attempted were a sea captain, a fat sailor
sitting on a coil of rope while playing a concertina and a tall rangy sailor whistling and
dancing a hornpipe. They were cast in plaster of Paris and painted bright colors and not
executed particularly well. They lived on the hearth of my mother's fireplace for many
years and I liked them a lot. This is a sculptural do-over. Putting one sailor on top of
the other makes it far more interesting compositionally, implies close friendship, and,
perhaps, slightly drunken abandon.
When I first showed this piece to my wife,
Bonnie, she said they were stacked. But she meant something quite different than what it
would mean if I had said it. Of course, she was referring to stacking, one figure upon
another. This actually has a long sculptural tradition, not so much in classical western
art but in primitive and tribal art. (Think of totem poles.) I've always been attracted to
these multiple figure images and love the power that they generate.