Saturday, November 14, 2015

Bench for The Woodlands, Texas

Monday, I received news that I had won one of 6 commissions in the Woodlands Waterway Art Bench competition.
 We were informed that work could commence immediately.  I already had the stone - it measured 10-1/2 feet long by 3-1/2 feet wide by 2-1/2 feet at the thick end and weighed about 9,000 lbs.
 The first thing that I did was lay out the design onto the stone and inscribed the lines with the diamond blade on a 4-1/2" grinder.
 I didn't need all of the 10-1/2 feet, so I split off the thin end by drilling holes and inserting feathers and wedges.  My proposal has the bench at 6 feet of length, but I'm going to try making it 8 feet since I have the extra stone.
 As you hammer in the wedges, they put pressure on the feathers and create a crack.  Here, you can see the piece split from the end and the left hand corner that I also wanted to remove.
 While the block was on its side, this was the time to make (what will be) the bottom flat.  I also pre-drilled 2 holes that I will use during installation to fasten the functional sculpture to the concrete footer with stainless steel pins and epoxy.
 Friday the 13th was the lucky day.  Dereck Sheroan brought the 23 ton crane from JBB, Inc. to help me move the preformed block to the studio.  The first thing that we did was stand the piece upright.
 Then, he loaded it onto the back of the crane.  At this point, we found that it weighs 7,800 lbs.  It will loose about half that weight before it is finished.
 We took the block over to the studio and loaded it onto the rail cart.
Here it is - ready to be rolled inside for carving. The 10,000 lb. stone next to it belongs to Meg and she will be sculpting a mother Gorilla on her back and playfully holding up her baby Gorilla above her. 

1 comment:

artistatexit0 said...

Congrats on the latest commission. Always interesting to see the process you go through to realize your projects.