Finding Beauty in Bad Things: Porcelain Vine

Fraser Smith's avatar Fraser Smith
    2013 8th place

I've been carving trompe l'oeil quilts since the mid-80s. I don't make real quilts from cloth, but rather imitate them carved of wood. This is my 48th, and one of the largest I've ever done. Yes, it's an unorthodox method of making a quilt, since it's carved out of a big block of wood. This piece is based on a plant I saw while at ArtPrize last year; the porcelain vine. My host had some growing in his backyard. There was so much variety in the colors of the berries, all on the same vine. Turns out they call it the "kudzu of the north", since it's invasive, and can completely cover, and kill trees, and shrubs. I'm thinking of doing a series of pieces where the plant, or animal, or substance, or... whatever, is a bane, but hides behind a visually appealing exterior, and uses that as a defense; an evolutionary tool, saying, "Don't kill me,... I'm pretty!". This is the first piece in that series. I have it "morphing" from quilt pieces on the left, to natural shapes on the right.

Entry Details
  • Art form: 3-D
  • Depth: 4 in.
  • Medium: Carved Wood
  • Width: 69 in.
  • Year created: 2013
  • Height: 48 in.