Three years in a row, I have participated in Eli Benveniste’s sculpture workshops at the Art Museum of Bornholm. It’s always good to get a new perspective on things, and Eli’s way of teaching is refreshingly different and very inspiring. Each workshop has had its own theme combined with a series of exercises to challenge our normal ways of sculpting.
In 2019, the theme was fearlessness to cultivate instinct rather than overthinking our way of working. We have been asked to sculpt blindfolded, to cut our figures in half and put them unevenly together again, as well as working on each other’s sculptures. Short and quick exercises to train the ability to trust our intuition, and center our focus on what’s happening between the hands and the clay.
Among others, I worked on this peaceful, calm state of mind head right next to the amazing wall relief by Jørgen Haugen Sørensen. One of 300 works he donated to the museum in 2014.
It is a bit of a back-and-forth process when you first sculpt a piece, and then cut it open to hollow it out. But otherwise it will crack in pieces when fired in the kiln.
Assembled again and almost done. Aimed for a soft peaceful expression. ’At Peace’, 2019.
This sculpture came out unintentionally dramatic. It started as a standing bust, which fell over. Instead of trying to rebuild it as first intended, I used one of Eli’s grips: ’Use chance to rethink your sculpture’. I added a hand to the toppled head and turned the sculpture into something new.
On the workshop in 2018, I worked with different motifs and various ways of doing reliefs. Soft female forms vs masculine scratching the surface, ’The Hand’.
The museum is beautifully situated by the coast next to Helligdomsklipperne (sanctuary rocks), which inspired me to go abstract with one of the sculptures on the workshop in 2018. Two rocks standing firmly grounded as each other’s matching opposite. On the right, one of my male busts.
The finished twin rock formation ’Matching Opposites’, 2018. Stoneware sculpture with manganese.