Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Supplicant

Feast Bowl
Black Ash Burl
Earth Pigment
Wood Smoke
D. 16.5" x H. 8.75"

The Supplicant faces the Manitou with his appeal, "Please, more." He knows to ask politely, with ceremony. He knows too well hunger. Despite all of his cleverness and labor he knows there are no guarantees. Perhaps there will be more... He takes nothing for granted.

Manitou is the Algonquin word for spirit being. As can be found on early Native American bowls, the Manitou on this bowl is represented in the abstract by the raised area of the rim. A Manitou on the rim of a bowl is a simple metaphor to understand.

This bowl is not a reproduction of any known original, it represents my desire to create something unique based upon my study of elements found in historic Native American allegory.

The bowl and effigy are from one solid piece of ash burl. The interlocking grain of burl gives great strength to wood allowing a bowl to be made thin and the effigy delicate. This was not a simple carving, it required that I make tools to reach the areas around and under the legs as the curve of the bowl restricted my knife. The arm bands are pewter cast in place. The smooth surface was achieved by many hours of scraping. The color was achieved by long exposure to wood smoke.