Playing outside in the trees with their friends and having fun!
So this is how this large project unfolded........
We were contacted in August to see if we would be interested in designing and creating this large foyer sculpture. Of course I was very excited when they told me that this was to be a brand new building that would be catering for a number of family and child services. A survey had been done with the kids already using these services around Geelong, asking them what they loved most about their own smaller centres......the overwhelming responses were :
Playing outside in the trees with their friends and having fun!
I immediately saw this design in my mind and presented it to the City of Greater Geelong. They were equally as excited, so it was all systems go! The butterflies represented the friendships, the flowers and leaves could be dicovered and counted for fun, and the tree of life was the symbol of nature, growth and development.
We started working on the tree trunk in late October.....Rowan sourced some great pieces of twisted steel that were used to frame up the design. My plan was for a 3 dimensional trunk to "grow" up and around a very tricky bulkhead ceiling section, and then for the branches to spread across over head.
Rowan was able to create a template for us to use in order to get all the angles right. Once the tree trunk was created, we moved onto the 3 branch sections. We snuck in an owl that Rowan had created, as well as the leaves and flowers that were in the original design. I used my drawing on the studio floor method to create all these sections that needed to blend and grow together on site!
The final piece of my design puzzle was the butterflies.....these were hand designed and cut using a plasma cutter, then welded together using up-cycled bolts and drill bits as bodies and hand curled antennae. Rowan's suggestion of spacing the butterflies away from the branches helped the process as well as adding the 3 dimensional effect I was after!
Installation day came on December 13th! Brent and Rod were a fabulous team and respected my wishes to the millimeter......even when I wanted one final butterfly to be installed separately to symbolise the child leaving the Early Learning part of their life and moving confidently on in their future.
The centre is currently being completed, will be given an indigenous name, and will be open to the public in January 2020! We are very holured to be part of the design and are looking forward to creating more exciting art next year!
Please enjoy some extra information about this moving project. It was a magical experience.........
Ziggy, my client, was one of the many people who lost everything in the Separation Creek/Wye River fires on Christmas day 2015. Ironically I had known the builder of her home, and was aware that it was clad in copper sheets. An unusual cladding choice, but one he felt would be fire resistant.......a couple of house owners later, Ziggy wasn't so lucky!
Ziggy contacted me in 2016, to ask me if I could bring some life to her two sheets of badly burnt and mangled copper that she had salvaged from her block. We spoke for some time, and immediately I felt a connection to her hilarious dry humour and her emotional story. It wasn't until mid 2017 that we caught up in person and I was given the copper to consider. The rich colours and the extra - twice burnt - malleability was very inspiring!!!
The text and font required for the sign to go under the Raven was a much easier process. I was excited to have a client that shared my love for Charles Rennie Mackintosh (Art Nouveau) inspired font........Ziggy was considering using the words Stark Raven!!!!.......The feathers were a later addition, a creative way of using up the copper off cuts......
The extra feathers was a creative way of ensuring that all of the large off cuts of Ziggy's precious copper went into the project!!!
Some went on the sign, while others were made into hanging mobiles for her to hang around her new home. Incidentally Zig was able to start over again in an incredible home and property deep in the Otways, far from the "slow ocean road"
During this project we had a bumper year in the studio, with many commissions, exhibitions and Christmas orders pushing Blue Raven down the list.......this was unfortunate at the time, but now after delivering and installing the piece and experiencing a much happier client than the one we first met....I truly believe the extra time was necessary in the healing process. xxxxxx
At the time though, Ziggy's patience was weighing heavily on me.........then I had a thought of a magical gift to not only say Thank you but to also help promote her healing........
Feather Healing ....... this necklace contains feathers created from the salvaged copper,
copper fittings and a special Ruby Malachite crystal xxxxx (she is wearing it in the first image of this blog)
Ziggy, it was an honour to work with you on this project.
As 2017 quickly draws to a close, I thought I would introduce you to a new addition to my creative metalwork......JEWELLERY
Inspired by nature and Celtic spirals, I have created a number of one off designs..... shawl pins, necklaces and earrings.
Choosing my current creative metalwork mediums of copper and welded steel, I have also been collaborating with fellow sculptor Dani Salvo of @bemykeeper using some inspiring pieces of porcelain. Beach glass has also been an inspiring medium.....
I have been having fun being able to wear all these new creations, but you are most welcome to own a bespoke piece of Cinnamonsart Jewellery......I will be adding a page on my website soon, and you can follow my creations on instagram @cinnamons_art plus you can contact me through facebook or my website.......
Leaves - this is my latest creation......quite an adventurous piece including 6 welded steel leaves and a focal Celtic inspired copper and steel leaf hanging in the centre. All held together by a steel twig with copper fittings.
I'm having lots of fun in this miniature sculpture world.....all created in between other larger metalwork projects and exhibitions......stay tuned for another busy year in 2018 xxxxx
Something magical happened at the Art Space during our opening last Friday night.......
Acclaimed professional writer, Janet Brown was invited to say a few words inspired by our exhibition, this is what she wrote and performed to an amazed and appreciative audience........please enjoy x
A Fairy Tale for Grown ups - Peacock Tango
You know that saying - nothing good happens after 2am? It’s time to go home? Last night at 2.17am to be precise, something good, something special, something kinda weird was happening here, on the Great Ocean Road. Here in Anglesea. Here at the Artspace. The moon, slung low and full was hovering above the Anglesea River. Reflected in the gentle waves. And those images bounced to the wet road and the broad windows of the gallery. Reflections of reflections of reflections. Exponential dimensions. The darkness of the gallery transformed into a silvery brightness, and, with the haunting sounds of Paul McCartney - Cinnamon had been playing the Beatles during the afternoon - he was still echoing from the walls… strains of a song about a bird, a song about waiting, a song about arising.
As though prompted, on cue, the ringmaster, Sitting Pretty, his elegant plumage shining in the lime-light of the moonglow, orchestrated the dance.
She’d been watching him for days, that woman there, on the barstool. All her cheeky cheeks, her white curves brazenly displayed. She’s a show off, that one. And so is he. A meeting of the minds? More than that.
He moves to her, such grace, introduces himself… and his intent... with a long, slow stroke of a single feather from her neck down to her toes. She remains still, refuses to move for the Moon In Peacock, but she raises one eyebrow, tilts her chin and she says ‘Shall we dance?’
The peacock, his plumage steel and gold all a-rustle, unfurls his grand curtain of feathered shiny colour – delicious turquoise, orange, gold: she’s just the type of woman he wants. ‘I thought you’d never ask.’ An irresistible twinkle in his blue eyes. He takes her hand. The master.
The beautiful Vancouver birds have travelled so far in Anticipation of a mysterious adventure Downunder. From their Vantage Point they see this moment – it’s just a moment – a kind of stretched out moment, but not a minute, not something you can time, not with a watch - they chirp and whisper – ‘Such goings on in this place. Don’t see that in Vancouver!’ The little innocents are agog, if birds can be agog.
Mr Cool, over near the corner, he knows exactly what’s going to happen. Snappy dresser – all full of himself in his best white suit, red hat, red tie and if he gets a chance, he’ll join in. But for the moment, he’s watching, taking it all in, pretending disdain.
Woman says ‘Cheek to cheek?’
Peacock croons ‘Tango’.
She says ‘Tango? A bird who can tango?’
He says ‘I’ll lead.’
And they dance. They dance that dance where there’s no past and no future. That dance where there’s only the moment.
The elegant, mysterious, blue cloaked woman with her beautiful black face so inscrutable - Bird Bowl Harvest - shimmies ever so slightly, irresistibly imitating them, her head bowl swaying in rhythm. Some of her face-framing blooms gently release their petals and they spill to the silver blue floor, cast like confetti for the dancers.
The swan and the spoonbill keep a respectful distance. Such antics are foreign to them. But they exchange a frisson of delight with the masqueraded creatures and a familiar nod to those ‘others’ all dressed up in their fancy finery and their curly, bird accessorised head dresses: it IS a special occasion.
The tango can be different things to different peop… ‘beings’, but at its heart it’s a language of embrace. It’s about desire and these two, these two….
They move as one. She absorbs him. They become each other. Everyone sees it happen.
He whispers to the shell of her ear ‘I have something for you, my love.’ Taking liberties.
She says ‘Something else?’
He says, ’Yes, a ring, a token of my affection.’
She pats his handsome head ‘An owl and a pussy cat and a runcible spoon: can you possibly improve on that?’
As he kisses her hand, slips the ring onto her finger - silver shiny, shiny.
He sings as only a peacock can sing at 2.17am ‘It’s cast from a found seagull’s thigh bone. One who once danced on the wind.’
She gasps – ‘Oh!’ - and says to the shiny ring, “I’d so love to have wings. Imagine, flying.’ They nestle closer, they envelop, they adore, they consume each other.
Then, the light changes, everything now different. The moment of Mesmer has passed. With a shiver of his arc of eyed plumes, he reluctantly retreats from her curves and returns to his wheel of fortune. Still.
She, quite rapturously adorns a new canvas, changed, all plumaged legs with iridescent eyes and… satisfied.
Everything, everyone, now still.
And in the air there lingers, I’m sure it lingers…listen…Something about a special moment. Something about being free.
Special thanks to Janet for this incredibly magical experience for all those who were at the opening. For those who couldn't be there, I hope you enjoyed this blog xxxx
The Birds and Blooms exhibition continues until August 30th, open daily 11am - 4pm.
Birds and Blooms opens August 18th and the Surf Coast Arts Trail is this weekend, August 12 + 13!!!!!
Life has been very productive this year with all sorts of opportunities crossing my path. The Surf Coast Art Space has been an amazing initiative by the Surf coast Arts Officer, and I have been actively helping out by exhibiting, coordinating and curating some exhibitions this year! I have also been very active in securing Shire support so the space continues to support and promote local artists into next year!
Geelong Sculptor's Summer Sculpture exhibition, Anglesea Art Studios exhibition, Emerging Talent and Naturally Precious were all my babies and now my own time to shine is coming up with Birds and Blooms :)
Birds and Blooms will be exhibiting new metalwork from Rowan and my studio, but also collaborative artworks with some of my favourite artists: Geo and Jan Francis, (aka mum and dad), Jewerey from Steph Hocking, ceramic sculpture by Dani Salvo and our special international guest, Ilya Viryachev has posted over some bird and bloom inspired paintings!!! Opening Friday week on August 18th 6-8pm, exhibition runs from 17-30, open daily 11-4 at the Art Space in Anglesea.
At the time of writing this blog we are only days away from the 6th Surf Coast Arts Trail.....I have been one of the dozen or so art studios to be featured every year! I have delved into the exciting world of jewelry this year, so you can expect to find creative metalwork both large and tiny on show at Studio 66, venue 38 on this year's map......hope to see you on the trail....... x
Exciting commissions and exhibition opportunities keep flowing through the studio doors. I thought I'd share a little of our recent creations as well as let you know what is coming up!
My Native Spoontails have been popular again with an interstate order as well as this birdbath being completed for the Wyndham Lodge Community courtyard in Werribee. I enjoy creating these birds inspired by the tiny Blue Wrens, Willie Wag tails and the Fire Finches that flit about my studio door......
Kookaburra Moon was also selected for the Wyndham Lodge Community courtyard, with a few gum leave additions expanding the wall sculpture to a size suitable for the wall where it now resides.......
Kookaburra Moon is one of the few selected images I chose to be featured in my Red Bubble online store.... have a look at http://www.redbubble.com/people/cinnamonsart?asc=u
to see what I've been up too. These cards will also be available at my upcoming exhibition BIRDS AND BLOOMS later in August this year!!!!! Stay tuned for more information and a few special guests who will be joining me.....xxxx
Around 2 years ago the concept for this 4 window security panel project began over a conversation........ Evie Wood is a very good friend, fellow artist and home renovator........the idea of a series of metalwork screens for her special bay windows was discussed.
The idea of birds and plants was agreed upon and I drew up a very rough idea.....Evie trusted my vision and I began a very long process of creating the panels. The designs flowed one night under a full moon, each panel was a complete composition, but the entire 4 also needed to compliment each other. A quick visit to Launceston early in 2016 to measure up the windows was squeezed in, and the panels started to emerge..... First was Black Cockatoo and the Gumnuts......
next panel was the largest, Mopoke Owl amongst the Grevillea, which of course required a moon to be added.....
The third panel, same size as the first...(because the 1st and 3rd windows open, so these panels needed to accommodate the mechanisms required to use the windows!!!!) The White Goshawk over the fern fronds........
The final panel is the narrowest of the four, but I was determined to continue the entire composition across all the windows.....so the King Parrot over the Kangaroo Paw was always visualised to be hanging from the gum leaves to add some drama to the composition.
So after 12 months of designs and talking, a visit to Tassy, and then 12 months of creation in between other projects, we are finally complete and have booked our trip to Tasmania in April to install the artworks......stay tuned for the result xxxxx
Special thanks to Evie Wood for her trust and faith in my designs and ability to make magic happen x
Clonard College's new Chapel is full of hand designed and created artworks. Here is how we were involved.........
Linda Kiernan who has worked at Clonard for 30 years had a vivid creative vision of how she wanted this new Chapel to look. Inspired by the metalwork I created on the campus over 15 years ago in collaboration with Viktor Ceberg, Linda contacted me with a very excited phone call early in 2015 describing her list of creative metalwork sculptural elements she wanted from us. I was very excited with her vision and also the freedom I was allowed in the designs......
Here's an image of a piece I created back in 2001, and some of my pre-design work.
The first piece we designed and created was the water feature for the meditative corner in the Chapel. This was designed with the water drop/leaf/ flame shapes I devised from the mural another artist was creating, and also the Kildare Ministries candle symbol. We also commissioned Wathaurong Glass to create the glass panels that include the running water symbol......A Wathaurong student of Clonard designed a gorgeous panel of the lead light window 20 panel story, so this was another beautiful connection within the chapel space.
Feeling confident, we progressed to the lantern/lamp that was designed to be lowered down to light the candle before every liturgy and is extinguished at its conclusion. Again the design connected with the flowing lines around the windows, the light from the lamp of learning and the flame of Kildare Ministries.
Linda's next surprise in the last month before the official opening was that she had envisioned metalwork symbols on the external signage. The oak leaf from the Irish Oak tree where St. Brigid originated, the Brigidine Cross and the lamp of learning, oh and also a section of ribbon to connect the flow of the window design......and did I mention there are two signs!
The surprise candle snuffer I made for Linda and a close up view of the copper and metalwork detail in some of the smaller creations!
The final piece that was installed the day before the opening was the door embellishments. These included the oak leaf and acorns for St. Brigid and also some free flowing copper curly work, that I absolutely love! The green of the door and the signage is also a homage to Ireland.......
Thank you so much Linda for your trust in us to follow your brief with our own artistry.....I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge and I'm looking forward to your next vision! x
Clonard College is in Vines rd. Herne Hill, Geelong.
My Native Spoontail was inspired by Australian native flora. The bird, created from found objects including a spoon handle for its tail has been very popular this year. It has featured on mobiles, birdbaths and garden sculpture, but this was the first creative sculpture. The flowers were created with small pieces of copper around a washer, the leaves are pieces of cut steel, brass fittings as flower buds and a gear for the sculpture base!
Drill bits were also included as extra foliage ..........
The sculpture was created with the 2017 Surf Coast Calendar exhibition in mind, but as a favour I exhibited it at the local ANGAIR wildflower and art show......and it SOLD!!!!
I have been busy creating a similar piece, and this will be exhibited in October at the calendar show!
Also in October is the Geelong Sculptors annual exhibition. This year the theme is Wonderland, I hope some of you can make it along...Lots of amazing sculpture by over 30 local sculptors all for sale and looking gorgeous! I also help organize and curate the exhibition xxxxx
Here are a couple of our entries....
Queen of Hearts mirror by me and KO/Kanga-eru - to consider or to wonder by Rowan x
Exhibition details above x
This week I had some fun playing with the concept of my creative metalwork designs being used on fabric.....
Rusty Feather depicts a section of my Giant Feather sculpture photographed down at the beach! I was really happy with the offset rusty design with the brilliant blue sky becoming the backdrop. The original sculpture is now privately owned in Birregurra x
Kookaburra Moon only shows a detail of the original sculpture, but I loved the way the shadow of the sculpture makes this design jump off the fabric xxx The original sculpture is now on display at the Stonehouse Gallery, Warrandyte.
Copper Iris uses an enlarged bloom from the original mirror frame design on a top and a scarf. The original mirror is on show this month at Art @ Wintergarden, Geelong
Butterfly Moon and Gumnuts are both cropped sections of original metalwork artwork designs that work well on garments! Butterfly Moon Sculpture has sold and Gumnuts is part of a large series of window panels I am currently creating for a project in Tasmania xxxxx
This was all a fun experience that has led me to see how my designs would look on fabric! Perhaps something to investigate further with local printers..... For now you can see the full collection on http://www.shopvida.com/collections/cinnamon-stephens
but be quick because I will be deleting it soon........I require very high resolution images to continue to the printing stage, and I don't have these at the moment! It was fun to play though, and I hope you enjoyed my explanation of the different designs......for now its back to the studio for me x
Hi! I am the creative metalwork sculptor behind this page. Wife, mother of two and living from my creativity is a blessed existence.....I hope you enjoy my blog x