I created this piece for all individuals who recognize their purpose and the individual potential we all inherently have. When I was considering what I wanted to celebrate when I was brainstorming for this project (making a trophy) I realized that I wanted to honor life. Each life has a purpose, and a difficult journey of discovering and fulfilling that purpose. The trophy that I created commemorates the act of discovering purpose. I have many friends in mind who I believe deserve this award, and recently I’ve felt as if I have found my purpose in becoming an artist.
The aluminum piece is called an Inuksuk. It is modeled after the one that was built in my backyard in Alaska. The statue is pictured below but unfortunately it fell down during an earthquake in early 2016. The inuksuk is a symbol of strength and direction. In Inuit culture the statues are used as place markers, trail headings, and can often tell the cardinal directions depending on how they are build. I used this symbol because to me it represents resilience and a marker of an integral moment. I wanted to create a piece that celebrates finding the right direction in life, so using an inuksuk as a placemaker made sense.
I created a replica of the sculpture in clay and then created a two part sand mold to cast the object. This process was awesome to observe throughout the metal foundry class because each object was casted in a distinct way. My object was relatively simbple to cast considering some of my peers had four and five part molds.
I created the base in a way that makes the sculpture a vertical piece that appears to be sitting on top of polished rocks. I wanted to juxtapose the shiny and texturize aluminum with sparkaling crystals and rocks. I chose black and blue as a color scheme because I wanted to create an illusion of winter. For me, the cold months of winter always lead to self discovery. I also wanted to wanted to create Arctic context for the Inuksuk and tied the whole piece together by painting the spaces inbetweens the rocks turquoise.
I put my signature on the bottom of the piece instead of the title of the award because I feel that my signature is my purpose. The lines represent the contour of the susitna mountain range, which can be seen behind the Inuksuk in my backyard. Pictured below.
I hope you find your purpose, whomever you are and what you are to become.