A couple months back the plumber was here hooking up the big gas tank and installing the new water heater. It was a nice day so I was outside papier macheing. The plumber was kind of an old guy, the father of the plumber I actually hired. He was Ligurian -- Ligurian born, raised, and eventually dead. Ligurians are very proud of being a frugal group. All other Italians call them tight, cheap, short-armed. This old plumber was frugal even with his speech. He didn't say two words to me all day. Well, not until I got out the papier mache.
"Is that flour and water glue you're using there?"
My surprise at his knowing what it was must have clouded my thinking a little. I said, "Yeah! Do you papier mache?!"
"Um. No. But when I was a kid we didn't have real glue. Our moms made us that stuff for sticking things together."
"Really? How smart of them."
"Be careful. The mice eat it."
Damn if that old plumber didn't know what he was talking about.
that is the base of a sculpture called War and Peace with a big mouse hole in it.
I found a copy
of the epic book and am going to recycle it into an epic sized papier mache
sculpture (that's my way of wording it so it sounds like I'm doing
something noble when in fact I am ripping apart a great work of
literature so I can use the pages for a sculpture). A while back, when I
put on the first layer and it was still wet Ruffino ate a piece out of
it (apparently not only mice get the hankerin for a good piece of papier mache).
When I told my friend Christine about that she suggested that I change
the name of the sculpture to War and A Piece Missing, which I thought
was most clever. Now, just as the plumber had warned me, I've got War
and a Bunch of Pieces Missing.
I really like that I'm able to get helpful tips about my artwork from the plumber.
Going with this papier mache theme...I'd like to introduce Dorthea (aka: Do Si Do Dot)
The other girls and I had a little coming out party for her.
the party, before I broke it up because I got weirded out, we gave a
good luck toast to Jalieia and Spot who are now on display at a funky
little studio/shop/museum place in San Remo where Christine and I have
some of our Liguria Dog goods.
They've been sealed with real glue, and shellacked....I think they're safe from any mice.