Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Vandalia "Chiseled" Stone Symposium

Monday, Meg and I visited the Vandalia "Chiseled" stone symposium in Vandalia, Ohio, which is just a few miles north of Dayton (where I was born 49 years ago). We had a friend, Matt Weir, who was participating.

This was Matt's 9th day in a row for working on his large scale stone sculpture. He was holding up well - in fact, he was almost finished! The front side of his piece had a pixelated brain, which made a statement about crossroads and evolution.

He showed us the design for the back of the sculpture, which was a theater stage - as a metaphor for Life.

Moving 'stage right' (or upwind - however you want to look at it) was John Leon of Cincinnati, Ohio. John has an impressive list of accomplishments over his 30 year career. He is giving a video interview as part of the documentation process. The people who set up this symposium did a fantastic job - everything was 1st class!

I particularly enjoyed meeting Todd Frahm of Solsberry, Indiana. He is currently teaching stone sculpture at Indiana University in Bloomington.

He is carving a tree frog on a light bulb. I'm sure that we'll be seeing great things from Todd in the future.

This is Lasha Khidasheli who currently lives and works in Charlotte, N.C. He is originally from Georgia - not our Georgia, but the 'Old World' Georgia.

His sculpture, entitled "Sunset", uses negative space to let light through. I liked this photo because it included the sweeping architecture of the Recreational Center, in the background.

This is Patrick Sullivan of Squamish, B.C. Canada.

The staff of the symposium had provided smaller blocks of stone for kids to carve. There were hundreds of school children who had the opportunity of seeing the symposium first hand, and had a chance to see the process and talk to the sculptors. I hope that it 'lights a fire' in some of them, and produces a new generation of stone sculptors.

The Don and Tom Show - it was a 5 hour drive, each way, so we split it up with an overnight visit with my old college roommate (and fellow artist), Tom Mitts. (all photos Meg White).


artistatexit0 said...

Looks like fun and good for Matt! Have you done "Vandalia" before? I didn't know you played the guitar!

artistatexit0 said...

Looks like fun and good for Matt! Have you done "Vandalia" before? I didn't know you played the guitar!

don lawler said...

This was the first year for the Vandalia symposium. They said that they definitely weren't going to do it next year, as they want to spend the money on siting the 5 sculptures around the city. Maybe they'll do it the year after...maybe.

The advantage to taking a picture of me playing a guitar is that you can't actually hear it. Anyone can play a guitar, but few play well (I'm no musician - it's just good clean fun).