Need some help with 6 foot tall statue ( Paper Mache? )

Need some help with 6 foot tall statue ( Paper Mache? )

Postby diamondmoth » Sun Nov 21, 2010 9:51 pm

I'm building a statue of a person that's going to be around 6 ft tall and need some help with the construction.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how to construct the actual statue but eventually I'll need to work on attaching it to a base. The statue is going to be interacting with tree like statues but I think I can make those.

I was thinking of using paper mache type material. Start with a wire frame, and build it out with a wire mesh, coat in paper mache ( mostly to keep it smooth ) and then I plan on covering it with a mosaic of glass tiles. I want to cover it with a thick layer of some sort of gloss paint or other clear sealant.


Question Time!!
Does any one have experience with this sort of thing? How can I make it sturdy enough to handle the playa while still light enough to transport? Any ideas on specifically what material to use for the paper mache ( both glue and paper ) and what kind of sealant to use on the mosaic? What about a foam I can use to fill the inside of the statue?

Thanks a ton for your help!
User avatar
diamondmoth
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 11:24 am
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:27 pm

Glass is heavy. I don't think you could make paper mache strong enough. Perhaps start with an internal frame and do many, many layers ofplaster craft. I'd definitely incorporate struts into the skeleton. (Think about bird bones, if that makes any sense to you.) Or contact a local sculpture teacher.
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37413
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Postby lucky420 » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:40 pm

Could you use a mannequin?
User avatar
lucky420
 
Posts: 4172
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 10:47 am
Location: Reno, NV
Burning Since: I'm not sure
Camp Name: Dye with Dignity

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:52 pm

Possibly. They can be expensive and hard to come by, but if she starts shopping now...
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37413
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Postby diamondmoth » Mon Nov 22, 2010 7:32 pm

i was thinking mannequin would work best because it would also already be able to attach to a base.

But they are super expensive, if I could find a damaged one that would be best since I'm planning on covering it anyways.

any one know where to find cheap mannequins beside craigslist?
User avatar
diamondmoth
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 11:24 am
Location: Seattle, WA

Postby TomServo » Mon Nov 22, 2010 8:31 pm

In 2001 an artist from NYC did a statue, made out of medical cast material. He hired a model to pose nude, while he made casts of various parts of the body at a time. Then, cut and pieced them all together. He shipped it as one piece, but opened it on the playa in several pieces. He was able to put it back together, with extra cast stuff. I've seen half body casts...one front...one back, done with paper mache...but the model was lying flat. If your good at measuring, you can probably build a 2x4 skeleton, before attaching the cast parts. Perhaps, stuffing the empty space with newspaper, before sealing.

Do you plan on burning it?
anything worth doing..is worth overdoing

Vor Gebrauch Sprengkapsel einsetzen
User avatar
TomServo
 
Posts: 6017
Joined: Wed Dec 01, 2004 2:17 pm
Location: Marshalltown, Iowa
Burning Since: 1999
Camp Name: BloodBath&Beyond

Postby theCryptofishist » Tue Nov 23, 2010 10:57 am

diamondmoth wrote:any one know where to find cheap mannequins beside craigslist?

No. This is something to start on now. Also try freecycle and don't look in just your area, if you know someone who can grab and store one off CL then good. Also, the wider you spread the word, the more people will have eyeballs open. The economy might work in your favor; all sorts of stores are failing. Maybe you need to get in there during their final sales and asking what happens to the fixtures.
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37413
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Postby JStep » Tue Nov 23, 2010 2:57 pm

I think paper mache would hold glass just fine but you have to do it right. I would make sure to mix a good paste mix, I've used wheat paste with lots of elmers wood glue dissolved in the mix, and then rolls of butcher paper for the skin. Once you get 5 to 10 layers of that on there it will be very rigid when dry and still very light. If your internal frame structure is sturdy enough I believe the skin would have no trouble holding up glass.
~JStep
Nebraska Regional Contact
Tallgrass Burners - The Omaha and Nebraska Area Burning Man Regional Group
http://www.tallgrassburners.com
Email: nebraska [at] burningman.com
User avatar
JStep
 
Posts: 776
Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 4:19 pm
Location: Omaha, NE
Burning Since: 2011

Postby Tin Halo » Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:11 pm

Funny... one of my early considerations for an art installation for '11 involved paper mache` human figures. Here's what I've found...

Mannequins are a great form for paper mache`. You'll need some kind of release agent, one that doesn't retard the drying of the paper mixture. My plan was to coat the entire body and when dry, cut a seam all the way around, on the outer edge, pry off the paper, remove the mannequin, then re-assemble the two halves and glue them together with a new layer of paper.

Paper mache` is strong enough to hold the mirrors. Just do it right, do it thick, do it carefully.

My current experiment is still in progress, but so far has yielded excellent results: egg cartons.
Get the egg cartons that look like they're made of paper pulp - 'cause they are - tear them up into small pieces, combine with hot water and some white flour, and stir until the mixture is dissolved into a thick glop. Spread this over a frame of hardware cloth.
What you'll get when it dries is a near rock-hard structure. I've left my test piece outside for two months, now... it's endured heat waves, rain, and now snow, and is still sturdy, inflexible, and in the same shape in which I left it. It's turned a little brown from the exposure, but then, I didn't put any finish on it, duh.
User avatar
Tin Halo
 
Posts: 158
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:14 pm
Location: Twixt Denver and Boulder

Postby Tin Halo » Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:15 pm

OH... almost forgot: mannequins are available online, and if your city is big enough, locally at a retail store fixture place. If you plan on using the mannequin as a mold form only, then you don't need one that's pretty, just 90% there. Offer them$25-50 and you'll be doing the business a favor by getting rid of crap they can't use, and giving them a small stipend in the process.
User avatar
Tin Halo
 
Posts: 158
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:14 pm
Location: Twixt Denver and Boulder

Postby bx1 » Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:49 pm

Everyone here is pretty correct. Paper mache is all about the mixture/consistency. Done right, paper mache can be very strong. There are tons of instructions on the internet, just do a google search.
Braden aka BX1 aka -=B=-

THE BUSH (Returning bigger and badder in 2011):

http://www.placesafterdark.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=872

Image
User avatar
bx1
 
Posts: 418
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2005 8:10 pm
Location: Palm Springs, CA

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Nov 24, 2010 5:22 pm

Tin Halo wrote:Paper mache` is strong enough to hold the mirrors. Just do it right, do it thick, do it carefully.

Okay, I'd do a test sculpture, smaller, but maybe the same size in cross-section. Be sure you have a plan for its getting wet.
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37413
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Postby TomServo » Wed Nov 24, 2010 5:39 pm

Clear coat the statue and use gorilla glue to attach the mirrors. Although, I think it was mentioned earlier that a good paper mache can stand up to water. Lovely thing about the playa....rains are normally brief, and its still dry as fuck.
anything worth doing..is worth overdoing

Vor Gebrauch Sprengkapsel einsetzen
User avatar
TomServo
 
Posts: 6017
Joined: Wed Dec 01, 2004 2:17 pm
Location: Marshalltown, Iowa
Burning Since: 1999
Camp Name: BloodBath&Beyond

Postby Tin Halo » Wed Nov 24, 2010 7:12 pm

Pretty much describes the weather up here. :wink:
User avatar
Tin Halo
 
Posts: 158
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 12:14 pm
Location: Twixt Denver and Boulder

Postby SilverOrange » Fri Nov 26, 2010 7:37 am

Hey diamondmoth! Why don't you send a PM to my buddy Grendel. http://eplaya.burningman.com/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&u=42222 He's a sculptor and I'm sure he would be happy to answer any questions you might have.
User avatar
SilverOrange
 
Posts: 568
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:38 pm
Location: Chelsea

Postby Cheyenne » Fri Nov 26, 2010 11:35 am

You could do some sort of Anthony Gormley style installation! ...

http://ch.visitsouthport.com/sefton/gat ... ther-place
313

Go Tigers!
Cheyenne
 
Posts: 321
Joined: Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:10 pm
Location: Wales!


Return to 2011 Art & Performance

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest