A meteor falls from space and lands on a site at SWELL. On closer inspection strange ants like creatures spill out of the meteor and slowly metamorphose themselves into the landscape. Watch carefully as they slowly change colour in the sunlight.
Meteor Morphosis 2016 Fibreglass, steel bottle tops, chameleon paint, 150 x 120 x 35cm
The initial idea for Meteor Morphosis came from my oldest son Gabriel, who at 5 years old has a love of rocks and space. Convinced that his best friends dad was a spaceman, he suggested that I make a Meteor with special superpowers! He liked the idea that strange ant like creatures would crawl out from underneath, ‘…because we have a lot of strange ants in this country!’
We discussed how we would make the sculpture and what materials we needed. Last year I made, ‘For the LOVE of Sculpture’ for Sculpture by the Sea in Cottlesloe and played around with different pigments and paints to create the prefect blend of chameleon paint, that would change colour in the sunlight according to the angle of the light hitting the surface, this particular blend changes from blue to purple to green.
Another special feature of this sculpture is the surface treatment. Its made from approximately 3000 steel bottle tops, each one sanded by hand both inside and out. It takes hours of hard work to carefully prepare each top for the paint. They create a tessellation with a unique reptilian-like pattern seen in lizards, snakes and of course chameleons.
They are glued onto a fibreglass form, using a special type of techni glue. It takes 9 litres of techni glue to fill 3000 bottle tops, it’s necessary to fill each one, because it eliminates the problem of any air being trapped under the bottle top and expanding in the heat and causing it to pop off. I have tried numerous types of glues and this one is the best!
The form itself is made from layers of heavy chop strand fibreglass and resin, they are laminated together and then rolled to expel any air pockets, which would weaken the structure.
Its a nasty itchy job, which requires to be covered up on a 40 degree Australian summer day, so it gets a little crazy!
So that’s it, a visual guide to the making of Meteor Morphosis. You can see it at SWELL Sculpture Festival 8-17th SEPT 2017.