INSIDE KOSCHEY’S EGG
Inspired by the natural formations displayed in the massive base of a local maple tree, Richard explores the archetypal theme of modern man’s reliance on reason and his reluctance to descend into the underworld of the unconscious where Eros (life) and Thanatos (death) collide.
Drawing from Slavic Folklore he plays with what takes place when Koshchey’s* egg is broken open and his soul, spirit and death are released.
Richard , taking from his work as a psychologist, gives form to his own imagining of what floods out when life situations break us open. By not overly refining the formations Richard allows each viewer to interpret their own images of suffering and beauty.
*In Slavic folklore Koshchey is a sorcerer (scientist) who gallops naked around the wild Caucus mountain range on his magic steed(modern science/technology). “Koshchey Bessmertny” means deathless, or immortal because he has hidden his soul/spirit/life force or his “death” as he calls it, in a duck’s egg buried under the roots of a mighty tree, a remote, inaccessible place, separate from his body. If the egg is broken, Koshchey losses his power as well as his immortality (like so many men who are broken by life events he is pushed into entering a place where the only answers lie beyond our rational and emotional capacities).
This side table is part of a series of functional furniture that captures the viewers attention. It is constructed from a big leaf maple burl. It has a moveable top shelf to adapt to the room and other furniture. It also has a matching bowl from the same tree.
This Kings chair was made from a cherry tree that died just next to our home.
The media (a tree trunk) has its own beauty and form. I the sculptor attempt to honor that beauty and form while revealing something more within it. I bring forth elements often hidden under the surface, rippling flesh like texture just under the bark, beautiful marble like surfaces exposing the hard smooth maple wood, flowing forms of its shape. I then use these to help form my own imaginings.
A snake within a coiled root, a face of a man struggling, a dancing form. As the sculpting progresses I see from one direction a masculine form struggling with the snake (nature) trying to control it.
From another direction I see’s the feminine forms perhaps mesmerized or dancing with the snake. For myself this wood carving, as it progressed, became mankind’s past and current struggle with nature or the environment. The images that took shape involved the duality of masculine and feminine relationship to nature. As the sculpture came to completion I name it Ouroboros to represent the ongoing archetypal struggle of the human psyche to come to terms with its relationship to nature.
*The serpent is one of the most ancient mythological symbols in stories dealing with the struggle of consciousness. Throughout history and cultures of the world the serpent has been a symbol that addresses themes of duality, good and evil, transformation, rebirth, our relationship to nature, spirit and the underworld.
A whimsical kitchen table made for two-year old granddaughter!