Sunday, July 5, 2009

Residency with South High Students-Casting Creations Foundry Field Trip-May, 2009

For a look at lost wax casting and bronze art in Minnesota, we drove to Howard Lake to visit Wes Jones for a tour of his foundry: Casting Creations. The students received an in depth tour of the entire 20,000 sq ft state of the art facility and, after a lovely luncheon, watched one of the weekly metal pours.

The Fondeur Fashionistas
(in vintage foil suits by Vulcana)

Stevie coming out of his shell!

(or the bottom of a broken crucible on his head)

Thank You Wes and Casting Creations!

Residency with South High Students-Fossil Collecting Field Trip-May, 2009

One of the students first discoveries at the Lilydale Regional Park (old Twin City brick yard along the Mississippi River in St. Paul) on our fossil collecting field trip lead by Alan, a geologist from the Minnesota Geological Survey, University of Minnesota.

Alan helped us find, identify and understand more about some of the fossils that remain from the continental seas of millions
of years ago.

During the Ordovician time, Minnesota was located 10 to 40

south of the equator. The sea that covered Minnesota
contained a variety of marine organisms including corals,

bryozoans, brachiopods, clams, snails, cephalopods,

Eli, Marcus, Amanda, Andrew, Gita and JanLouise
Hammering, chiseling digging and smashing limestone rock.

We found crinoids, bryozoans, brachiopods and a small piece of trilobite.

Here is Alan, he described how rocks shapes demonstrate the presence of glaciers.

Sam brushing off the sand.



Residency with South High Students-Introduction to this Collaborative Process-May, 2009

Denny Sponsler, ceramics teacher at South High, was more than accomadating to our request to make art with creative teenagers, he gave us total freedom and a group of inspired students. He helped them with the logistics of scheduling workshops and etcetera into their busy days. We met at South High School in Minneapolis to discuss their participation in the creation of the bronze sculptures that will be placed in the concrete bench on the plaza next to the fountain.

The students are learning several mold-making techniques and the 2 cast metal processes. The students have gained a better understanding of our ideas and inspirations of the sculpture fountain; Minnesota Geology, Mississippi River, Community Involvement in Public Sculpture and Social/Political Water Issues (water quality, watershed, plastic water bottles, privatization of water, etc.)

After our muddy and mukky fossil field trip, we got down to brass tacks and wrote down words/ideas having to do with water in it's 3 forms, and practised the art of working backwards in clay and making impressions --we cast plaster forms.

The students began "word harvesting", gathering words about water from classmates and community members. They found the word "water" in languages spoken from their classmates to incorporate into their sculptures.