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Entries in harold arts (5)

Woodshed Build Underway

The base beams of the woodshed are laid.   Using a chainsaw to carve up 10" by 10" white pine beams, these timbers are tied in to concrete posts with custom metal plates that unify the structure.  

the base plates have holes for thru-bolts that tie the wood timbers permanently to the concrete piers.these heavy 10 by 10 white pine beams can be managed by a single sturdy person.  They are designed so that each one slides down the anchored rod over the previously laid beam.  The first and last beams are distinct in that they account for the order of placement.  The final beam overlaps both the pentultimate and first beam.In this view from the woodpile, we can see that we are almost finished laying the beams!

Kickstarter Premiums are ready!



Hello all you generous kickstarter contributors. You'll be pleased to know that the premiums are ready and will be shipping out at the end of the week. The gorgeous little medallions have a layered gesso finish that is finalized with the oil of my hands. Painted on the surface of these medallions is a never-ending line from the tip of a brush. Additionally, they are made from the scrap of the wooden forms that became the concrete piers. You will hold a piece that formed the foundation of the sculpture.


For those who chose the works on paper as your premium, you will be receiving a pop-up book of sorts that directs your gaze to the center of our milky way galaxy around about the Sagittarius constellation.

This little map gives you a glimpse into the interior of the upper observation deck's structure. If you visit the Woodshed, and I hope you do, this correlates to the actual view southwest in the Summer.



A pogo stick, a campaign, and some Quakers

Out here in Chesterhill, Ohio we are daily concerned with the most diverse things. Yesterday the good wizard Rob Roy brought a pogo stick, which immediately became an object of entertaining sport. Watching artist types do the one-jump hop and drop was a source of enthusiastic merriment, until the particularly sporty Jason Ajemian on his 26th bounce perforated a wooden porch board. Cries of sabotage were immediately professed and a thorough investigation was launched.

Of course, there are other things we make time for out here on the farm.   We have been slowly figuring out how to use the Newtonian telecope and magnetic compass. On Thursday, some of us scraped the mud from our feet, ran a comb through our hair,  and put  fancy shoes on our feet to go sing hymns at the Quaker meeting house. There are some crazy lyrics up in that book to a lewd mind like mine, but kept a lid on my agnosticism for the occasion and it was just fun singing songs with elders.


In other news, we have made a stop motion video featuring a glorious kitten named Gnarles Barkowitz the junior. This entertaining and almost undecipherable video is our best attempt at conveyance of our aspirations for the Woodshed.  More info can be found at the kickstarter site to inspire your generosity.


Beginning Bits

Great people of the Internet, here is your irregularly updated Woodshed tidbit from Chesterhill, Ohio. I have been abandoned to the wilderness by my cohorts who have too many parties and too little time, but worry not, that blinking tower on the hill is piping these pictures and words right to your screen.


It is surely correct that I sit and stare intently at nothing, and that this informs the type of objects that I make, but there is a larger portion of practical thinking that goes on as well. With the Woodshed, I think of the sculpture's fundamental qualities, and then work backwards for the specifics. My thoughts focus on the fundamental task of creating a musician's practice space with a view to the stars. So I imagine the most comfortable way to view the stars and the kind of space that would be interesting aurally. Naturally being an Odd one, I thought to make a room with 11 sides, no parallel surfaces, and a rotating stellar observation deck that you can lay comfortably on while touring the night sky.


Right now, it's a lot of prep work and looking at flowers and getting to know the neighbors who are typically smaller than a basketball and startled at my intrusions. Between walks in the woods and cooking experiments, I've been sharpening chisels, finalizing scale drawings, and prototyping the jointery and forms for the build. These first cuts help me get a sense for the material and tests that I am necessarily equipped.

 Lady, Guardian of the Perimeter

After doing a rough site layout, I determined that I would need a tripod, so I made one with some flooring scraps. But first it was necessary to make a worktable. These generally enjoyable activities are made even more so with the ever stalwart lady, guardian of the perimeter. Please leave a comment if you have questions or would like further detail of some aspect. Until next time, your itinerant art worker, Conrad.

Light up the Purple Sky

timbers at dusk and what will become the Woodshed

At dusk before a serene late Spring night, I am sitting on the pile timbers that will eventually be a kinetic building for musicians so that they may hone thier songs, and maybe go up top to catch a twirl around the stars.  This is the precise moment when an idea becomes real, and is for each blossoming project the time with the most potential.  None of this would happen without the terrific people at Harold Arts who are making room for me in thier life and who I thank deeply for having the courage and generosity to support the making of such a place.  These are hills where the stars are milk, and the whip-or-wills echo down the evening time, pals are drinking moonshine, and the silence of a falling star lights up the purple sky.

This eleven sided structure, called the Woodshed will enclose a distinct acoustical space.  Additionally, a fully rotating sky-deck will allow comfortable observation of our heavenly rotunda.  More will be revealed as the project unfolds, but for now I can tell you this: the Wood was harvested on the site near Chesterhill Ohio, and milled a couple miles down the road by Amish neighbors.  All the jointery and construction methods are directed toward the creation of a sculpture that serves as a contemplative zone for relaxed creativity, and focused observations of the natural universe. 

pile A