Tag: conjoined twins

Conjoined Twins Project

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This time last year, I was taking my first sculpture class at JMU. Sculpture is super intimidating for me, but I really surprised myself with the work I did in that class. I mentioned this in a previous post about my sculpture class, but the theme of our final project was conjoined twins. We were free to make basically any kind of sculpture that related to this topic. My professor encouraged us to do a lot of research and explore all possibilities. We scheduled one-on-one meetings with him to discuss our findings and ideas.

I did a bit of research on conjoined twins in general and learned that there are many different types of conjoined twins. One type that particularly caught my interest was parasitic twins. Parasitic twins occur when twins begin developing, but don’t fully separate, and one of the twins becomes dominant at the expense of the other twin. The parasitic twin is therefore severely undeveloped and often does not resemble another human at all, rather, extra body parts. The word “parasite” has such a negative connotation and that’s what I wanted to base my project on. I didn’t want to make something that parasitic twins would actually wear or use, I wanted to create a statement piece. My idea was to alter a jacket to fit grown parasitic twins if they were to make it into adulthood. I wanted to add a cage to the front to reflect the negative connotation of the term “parasitic” and to communicate a feeling of shame and embarrassment.

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I have very limited experience in altering fabric, so this project was definitely a challenge. I got most of my supplies from Goodwill over Thanksgiving break: a wool coat, two belts, a patterned skirt, and a red button-up shirt (which I ended up not using because of time limitations). The first thing I had to do once I had my supplies was to create the cage. I created the cage by cutting a few rods of steel, bending them, and then welding them together.I added an extra horizontal rod at the top of the cage to hold a “curtain” that I cut from the patterned skirt. The pattern on the skirt was a cluster of black leaves on a white background. I chose this pattern as a reference to Adam and Eve covering themselves with leaves out of shame after they were cast out of the Garden of Eden. In the case of this project, the leaves are used to hide the parasitic twin out of shame.

DSC_0421Twin Jacket Collage

With the cage completed, I was able to figure out how to attach it to the coat. Because of my lack of practice doing this kind of work, my method was pretty crude. I did a lot of “guesstimating” and hoped that it would end up close to how I envisioned. I cut out most of the front of the wool coat and then sewed one side to the cage using thick red embroidery thread. I used the color red not only for unity because the coat itself has red in it, but I also used it to emphasize the sense of invasion. I attached two belt buckles to the other side of the coat, which then fastened to the ends of the belts that I sewed onto one bar of the cage. I’m happy to report that it turned out really nicely–in fact, it exceeded my expectations. The only problem was that the end product was a bit too large when I modeled it, which took away from the effect. Other than that, I was really happy with it and so was my professor.

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Have you ever created wearable sculpture art? Let me know about your experience in the comments! Thanks for reading :]

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Fall is Approaching…

I’m not doing a very good job of keeping the site updated, I know! :/ The last few months have been crazy in a slow kind of way if that makes any sense… The future is still a little fuzzy, but I have been taking steps toward the things I ultimately want. I promise I’ll actually elaborate on that in the next few posts (which will not be months apart…). After some updates, these are the next 5 posts you can expect to find here (maybe or maybe not in this order):

  1. My August show at Larkin Arts
  2. The story behind the collaborative bookshelf chair
  3. The story behind the conjoined twins project
  4. The zillions of hours that led to me finally earning a teaching license (this will probably be split up into multiple posts)
  5. My experiences at some conferences/workshops in the last year

I have so many things I want to share! That’s just part of the list :P

 

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Sculpture

As an artist, I love making things. I’ve loved making things for a long time now. For some reason though, I never really got into 3D art until I had to take required classes in college. During my time at JMU, I’ve taken 3D Design, Metal and Jewelry, Ceramics, and Sculpture. Although working with these mediums did not come as naturally as painting or drawing for me, I really enjoyed these classes. I took sculpture this past fall and was so worried about it because I just had this idea stuck in my brain that I’m not very good at 3D art. I didn’t expect too much out of the class. Boy was I wrong! I learned so many things and was so proud of myself by the end of the semester. Here is a brief summary of everything I did:

1. Hybrid made out of chicken wire, burlap, plaster, wood, and newspaper

Sit With Me

Sit With Me

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The requirements for the first project were to make a sculpture combining elements from three different things: a vehicle, a fruit/vegetable, and an animal. I chose a boat, an avocado, and a kangaroo. This project evolved quite a bit and I was very happy with the end result.

2. Plaster Molds of Fruit/Vegetable Hybrids

Pumpkin + Pepper + Starfruit Pumpkin + Pepper + Starfruit Pepper + Gourds Pepper + Gourds Peppers + Starfruit Peppers + Starfruit Peppers + Starfruit

This was my least favorite part of the semester. Mostly because I was super tired of working with plaster by now. We had to bring in 2 fruits or vegetables, coat them with silicone, let the silicone dry, cut off the silicone (the food was starting to rot at this point so that was gross and smelly), wrap the mold with tape, mix plaster, fill the mold with plaster, let the plaster harden, remove the mold, repeat 4 more times, and combine different parts together. We had to make three hybrids (we used each other’s silicone molds) and then choose one to enlarge for our next project. I was so glad to be done mixing plaster.

3. Steel Rod Hybrid Chair Thing

Steel Rod Chair Steel Rod Chair Steel Rod Chair Steel Rod Chair

I learned how to weld! I loved welding. I felt so productive. I think this project took the longest, but I was very proud of myself upon it’s completion. You can really sit on the chair, although it’s not comfortable at all.

4. Conjoined Twins Project

Parasite Parasite

This final project had the most thought behind it. The assignment was to create an object for conjoined twins and we were encouraged to really think outside the box and consider life as a conjoined twin and what difficulties they are faced with. This explanation is a bit more lengthy so I will write a separate post on it and include the link here :]

I had to work really hard and work on projects over the weekend a lot, but I really enjoyed the class overall. My hard work paid off and I got an A. I learned that I am more capable than I often think. That’s always nice. Thanks for reading, have a great week!

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