Friday, July 29, 2011

The bowl and leaf production goes on

It just seems to be the way of things - the lead up top an exhibition or showing (such as open studios) means that we artists need to increase our stock. Because we are to show working studios we not only need finished works for display band sale; but also works at different stages of development so we can be 'at work' if/when people visit.

You can see from the photo below that I have annealed a stash of metal for leaves and feathers.

Barry Smith © Beautiful annealed metal
Barry Smith © Layers of metal
I have also been in production mode on bowls. One of the common features of these bowls is that I have used as much of the original patins as I could and therefore all the beaten bowls were cold formed with one continuous metal beating session on each.

The Spiral bowls are not beaten into bowl shapes - rather I have harnessed the shapes of the bases out of two of the old spirit stoves - they have strong polished rims - end up being bowls with a steampunk influence.

I called the smallest bowl Through the Fire as it was made from a very badly burnt soup ladle - distorted and lots of fire scale. I think it makes this piece special - it looks old and as though it has a lot of history - both joyful and sad.

Worn silver was made from a small worn butter dish with squared stepped sides which I knew would produce lovely rings when beaten.

Copper rays started life as a serving platter with a stepped centre. In a way each piece of metal or old object invites me to see a new piece that can capitalise on some aspects of the metal itself.

Barry Smith © Rivet spiral (150mm)
Barry Smith © Beaten  spiral (150mm)
Barry Smith © Copper rays (200mm)
Barry Smith © Through the fire (90mm)
Barry Smith © Worn silver (110mm)
And have had to produce more leaves - we have had quite a number of visitors lately so leaves seem to wander out the door as we say our farewells - always good to see the smiles on faces when we can give such small but creative gifts.

Barry Smith © Brass and copper leaf litter on wood in afternoon sun
After I complete a wing of feathers I think I am in good shape


  1. The bowls are soooo beautiful. Love 'Through the Fire'! And those leaves - they make me catch my breath each time I see them - so natural looking. I would love to hear them 'rustle' in the wind...

  2. I love everything you have made. Wonderful work, Barry!

  3. Barry I am in love with these new bowls! Mesmerizing.

  4. Those leaves just speak to me. The colors the curves. We need a video of you doing those. Do you pound the bowls into a form? What's the average time to make a leaf? Also like the spot welded circle it's like the spiritual circle gardens often seen here.

  5. Beautiful, and, of course, I'm partial to the spirals!

  6. Am always a fan of your leaves Barry, but 'Through The Fire' speaks to me on another level.
    Clever work.

  7. Each one has its unique character and warmth. I love all these pieces, they are true works of art!
    How I wish I could stop by, admire them from real close, touch them!
    Have a wonderful and successful show!!!

  8. barry, your bowls are so beautiful--the spiral and the ladle one, superb.

  9. ... there's no stopping the man ...
    it's all looking great ...Ken

  10. Beautiful, beautiful bowls, and the leaves, of course, are stunning.

  11. Hi S, K, R, TT, SZQ, V-A, JM, AM, V, KM & C - wow folks just great to have the support of one's fellow artists across the globe - I'm glad that the bowls and leaves can still bring forth a positive reaction. I hope that those who come to the Open Studios will also be excited not only by the shaping of the metal but the fact that it is possible to take scrap metal an it's history and take it forward in a new form to gain new friends and a new history - born again? May we all go well, create well and support each other. B

  12. it is always AMAZING to know that a discarded object to someone, when it falls into an artist's hands, become something truly unworldly and beautiful! and that no one, esp not its previous owner would believe that it was once .. a burnt ladle :)


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.