Monday, December 8, 2014

carved wet and baked dry

Last Saturday I heard from Bill Wolfram. He told me the back story about the stacked words in the basement lobby of Weller Hall. Double click on images to enlarge.

In the fall of 1960,  Bill and Marx taught down the hall in the basement of Weller at Concordia University.

According to John Donald Weinhold, class of '56, that room first opened in the fall of 1952. It was the center of any and all art instruction. Which is sort of hard to believe in 2014. Because everyone knows Concordia Seward is known for its solid art programs.

Bill Wolfram said:
Concerning the carved bricks, Marx and I did that job. However, Marx was the supervisor. He was the main man. The wet bricks were purchased in Lincoln at the brick yard.

Two minute video. Consider the planning, cutting into wet clay, and baking section by section, and lining up the bricks just right to do this.
 (The whole idea and design was Marx's.) Marx did the two organic design panels next to the two stairs.
However, the two of us drew the letters and carved them. They were fired in a small kiln in the basement of Weller where we taught.
It took a quite a few kiln loads. Yes, they were carved in that basement classroom. (This was before the annex.) We installed it together. It was not that difficult a job to do. I do not remember what kind of glue we used. 
Across that hall space is a bench that is also made of bricks. Its carving is very minimal. Not so much an art piece.     Bill Wolfram (via email Nov. 1, 2014)