BRIDE OF THE COSMOPHORE by jean pronovost
This sculpture just inspires dancing and feelings of frivolity. This beautiful woman beckons you to join her, she’s calling you to the party, but that turtle she’s on top of has a look on his face that says the contrary. So, which do you listen to?
This beautiful free-spirited woman playfully dancing on top of a turtle’s shell is not all fun and games. The turtle is an old symbol, seen in ancient Greece, reflected in their temple architecture and on their coins, and in ancient Rome as a symbol for fertility, and by the Mayans and other native cultures, representing the earth. For the latter, the earth we inhabit is actually a giant prehistoric turtle that is swimming in primordial water.
The bride dances about on the back of the turtle in her ancient, fancy jeweled belt without any care or respect, and with her eyes closed. She is blind to what is really going on, a willful ignorance so she can keep having fun. She is an allegory warning us about the dangers of narcissism, ignorance, and vanity. The bride is playing with an octopus, stretching it about and over her head. The octopus is a symbol of nature, cleverness, and knowledge, as well as it is an intelligent predator: old legends spoke of giant octopus that would attack boats and if caught would attack people and pull out their eyes. It is also regarded as a creature that cannot be manipulated, and yet she is bending it to her will and without thinking of the consequences or its own nature. She lacks conscience in every way for the natural world, she is ignorant and makes herself blind to what her actions cause. The bride symbolizes our current attitude towards Mother earth and our failure to care about how our actions harm her. We would rather be distracted by celebrities and mimic their shallow aesthetics than to see the reality of the world we live in and how our excess is killing it. The bride tells us that the carefree moments will not last forever, the turtle will dump her off into the water and the octopus will gouge out her eyes. One can’t dance freely for long while the world burns, especially when nobody is watching.
BRIDE OF THE COSMOPHORE - THE PROCESS
- This sculpture took over a year to complete.
- Two pieces: The base and the woman.
- The Base : the waves have been sculpted in reinforced resin on a 3/8” thick sheets of metal plate, and there is a metal structure inside the turtle, and it is soldered to the base for strength. There is a hole in the turtle’s back, and this is where the post that is inside of the leg of the bride is inserted, connecting her solidly to the base. The turtle is made of resin reinforced with fiberglass and modeled.
- The Bride : There is a metal frame in raised arms and head. She is made of resin that is reinforced with fiberglass and otherwise is empty inside to keep her lightweight. She consists of many layers of modeling and casting to create her aesthetic. The fancy belt she wears is actually a jewelry collar, sculpted and molded on top of her body.
- The octopus is made of resin reinforced with fiberglass. There is a metal structure inside it, stretching under each tentacle. It is not based on a live model, but rather molded, cast and created from scratch
- Air tools and power tools were used to carve and create texture for all parts of this sculpture
- The sculpture is then primed, coated in real bronze powder, then oxidized with patina and varnished
- There is a second version of this statue done in white to create a marble finish