Rather than using putty to create dimension between the driftwood on the Hunters, I combined sand with Bond-Crete producing a cement like mixture. This also allowed me to continue with the nature theme. After filling in the gaps with the mixture, shells and beach findings were pressed into place. The mixture set like concrete anchoring the shells thus securing their survival. It also bonded the driftwood together and added weight to the sculptures, making them very solid pieces.
The difficulty in working with the sand/BondCrete mix was its ‘unrestrained temperament’ in the aqueous state (preferring to move to its own rhythm). By allowing the mixture to partially dry out first, improved viscosity and workability was achieved. Once set, it was like rock and the only option was to build layers as required. As it was not practical to lay the Hunters down whilst bringing them to life, gravity and the wet mixture became a barrier to the sculptures survival. To solve this problem I built the sand/BondCrete in increments, placing larger shells to fill gaps and taping in place until set. Although this was difficult at times, it also allowed me to select the right shaped shells to best create a sense of volume and fluidity.
Once the larger shells began to set in the sand/BondCrete, I strategically placed smaller shells on the Hunters. My vision was to create texture and colour whilst enhancing muscular detail to capture the appearance of nonlinear movement and rhythm. After all shells had been placed I applied resin between the edges of the shells to seal and protect.
In comparison to the rest of the body the head was a slightly different process. The heads comprise of dried whole coconut shells, drilled and secured over the steel rod. Coconut rind was attached with sand/BondCrete mixture onto the whole coconut, creating the face and head in proportion to the body. Large holes were drilled into the back of the head and filled with glue and strands of rope to give the appearance of hair. I then used the sand/ BondCrete mix to fill around the roots of the hair and further secure the strands. Shells were then placed in for detail, the ropes were braided and the ponytail tied up for the female.
Rhythm Hunters – filling gaps with sand/bondcrete/shells