Shape note or Sacred Harp singing is a tradition in the south that blends faith, song and food. Singers gather in groups that fill country churches and sing with a sound that resonates throughout the rural countryside. Fellowship is celebrating while singing praises and we eat. Oh my goodness. We eat. But back to the story of this forged iron still life sculpture.
Directions to an area singing were go to the Big tree and turn left. Well the big tree wasn't exactly right where you turn but about 1/4 mile after you turn and it was indeed one of the biggest old dead trees I have ever seen. When you live in the country all directions involve a church, a tree, a fence post and a dip in the road.
This hammer sculpted still life is a tribute to fond memories and good times. The big old tree has seen its share of year after year of singing travelers. Its once full canopy where you could sit and eat dinner in the shade is now sparse and skeletons of limbs as big as trunks stand like art forms against the sky. The wood fence has long been a land mark for travelers as they look for the homes of relatives and the location of a country church. Signs are almost always hand written and the scattered arrows make an attempt to keep folks from out of town from getting lost.
This piece is an attention getter. Something that will start a conversation and spark a memory. It is a good size for a table or prominent shelf. It is approximately 16 inches square and about 20 inches tall. It is finished in hand applied layers of black and brown beeswax hand buffed to hard protective finish that highlights the marks of the process on the iron.
- Care is as easy as occasional polishing with a bees wax based furniture polish.
This is one of the 2016 Nature Series Still Life Sculptures by artist blacksmith Walter Howell.
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© Copyright Walter Howell 2016. All rights reserved.