Middle Earthiness

Roger 1

It’s exactly the midpoint of my residency today. There are three two-week residents (two writers and an environmental artist) who are leaving tomorrow and this afternoon, a ‘mini-open-studio’ open to the public, featuring their work.  Wednesday, three new two-week residents arrive, and  Sunday, August 9 is our open house, with seven of us, and if you are near here, please come!

Roger 2

I wanted to show you Roger Rigorth’s work (and have his permission to do so).  He is from Germany, part of I-Park’s 2009 Environmental Art program, and basically he travels the world building these things, though he does have a studio practice as well.  Check out his website.  (‘Galerie’ shows studio work, ‘Symposien’ shows the worldwide environmental pieces). It’s been fascinating to watch this work happen, and I’ve really enjoyed our conversations as well, and I love the piece…all sorts of associations form in its presence.  It’s huge, too – the individual structures are over ten feet tall.  The weaving is done with thick rope made of ‘manila hemp’ – the same fiber I am using as a fine, fine pulp. It’s incredibly solidly built as it is now, and Roger says that when it gets wet (it rained last night) it will contract as it dries, just like the overbeaten paper fiber does (not as intensely!), and further strengthen the structure.

Roger in progress2

I am trying very hard not to make any comparisons with the speed of Roger’s pace and my seemingly incredibly slow sheetmaking, hand-shaping and casting…but when I first went to look at his work, three days into the residency, he already had the long, ball-topped pieces cut and shaped, and one of the weaving armatures finished.  (Incredibly to me, all the Environmental Art program folks make their work in a two-week period – though, if you are here during the main sessions, you will have your dinners provided so as to facilitate your work). So, OK, yesterday I worked out a schedule to adhere to in order to finish both my studio work and the (smallish) outdoor installation, if it’s approved.  So now I’d better get out there and at it.  But I’ve been very, very glad to have met Roger. He’s given me a lot to think about. Next, he heads back to Korea.


(Roger’s on-site transport.)

4 thoughts on “Middle Earthiness

  1. (Grinning) – I don’t know the story behind the bird’s nest on the bike seat; just went out the studio back door to stretch a bit and there it was.

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