"Undulation" Stone Carving by Artist Rick Clement

Stone Carving

Free Form Stone Carving
Most directly related to Abstract Exprssionism and before that Surrealism
Tools: hammer, chisel, files and sandpaper

The basic principle that I start with when carving a stone is that movement in space creates form. So that is where I begin. I start carving the stone and the forms begin to develop. When I first start carving the movement might be rhythmic or chaotic. Either way, out of the movement of carving the stone, a form will begin to develop. I go with the movement  allow the forms to grow in the same way that forms grow in nature.  We can look at ourselves and see the forms of our bodies. The geometry in our eyes and the organic movement in our fingertips. Organic and geometric forms are growing all around us in all the plants and animals that live and grow. Not only do we see this movement in the living forms but we also see it in things that are not alive. The water rushes  around the boulders and back into the sea creating a myriad of forms in the sand and the stones. When an acorn falls into a pool of water we are able to experience  the forms of the splashing water jumping up into the sky and the  concentric waves vibrating out from the point of impact. I want my stone to grow in the same way that the forms of nature grow.

I look at myself and see nature at work in the forms of my own body. I see the swirling movement in my fingerprints, the geometry of my eyes and symetry of my body. Nature is “thinking” in each of us, building the organic and geometric forms of our  bodies. I believe that this nature that has been “thinking” in us from the beginning of our lives is what forms the foundation for what we believe are our own conscious thoughts. When I am carving a stone I do not want to copy or immitate the forms of nature that surround me but rather to let the nature that is “thinking” in me guide the development of the forms.

To understand more fully my approach to carving a marble it is important to recognize that whether the movment is in a living and growing organism or it is the movement of the physical universe we can see similar forms evolving. It is the movement in space that builds the form. Why is it that in the material universe there there are spheres such as planets and drops of water that are equel to the spheres of an animals eyes or the seeds of a plant? In formations of chrystals and ice there are a multitude of geometric forms that are similar to shapes of flowers and pattterns on butterfly wings.

When I begin to carve a stone I am working  in a manner that is related to  the developement of form in the material universe and as the work progresses I allow the nature that is “thinking” in me take controll and guide the evolution of the forms.

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