For our final project for land art I created some beach ‘effigies’ in the form of head sculptures as a homage to all of the far away cultures that the sea has allowed us access to. I had been looking at Oceanic masks for the box project and also at the Moai heads at Easter Island so I wanted to reflect those stylistically. The colours and the pitting in the metal reflect time passing and the impact of nature.
I came across some chunky rusted metal on the beach when I was collecting driftwood for Week 3. I thought perhaps some of this metal may have come from sailing or fishing vessels whose voyage and destination I would never know of (although the bottle caps probably came from local students!). Assembling the faces was fun but there were problems with gluing flaky rusty pieces and power tools had to come out also! I mounted the heads on to driftwood-with difficulty and I was worried they were not that stable.
I decided to photograph them on the beach and I had also planned to do some shots underwater. I arranged the heads in a pool underwater, and immediately millions of tiny bubbles from holes caused by wood worm in the big head, started to float to the surface. I was in such a hurry to try and capture this on film that I got stuck in the sand and was completely soaked when a wave came in. Then one of my little heads was drowned and buried forever in the sand. Note to self-wear a wetsuit next time, bring dry clothes, and learn how to turn on the underwater setting beforehand!