I feel I often begin posts by talking about how excited I am, and am probably getting dangerously close to sounding like I’m perennially hopped-up on something, so, despite the fact that I AM really excited about this announcement, I’m going to refrain from stating that. First.
I’ve so appreciated all the love folks have shown me, and support for Hieropice. I think, as an artist, you’ve got to keep innovating, changing, doing new things, to keep your brain from atrophying, or burning out.
As I was making one of many made-to-order terrarium necklaces recently, I thought, man, I am working SO small, the vessel is so tiny, I really wish I could expand this and create a whole landscape in this thing! And my next thought was, um…..I can! So, I started thinking about ways to create miniature landscapes under glass, and for some reason, the first thing that came to mind was Tucson, Arizona, where I lived after high school. The desert there was the most surprising place I’d been to-date; contrary to my impressions from back East, it was not “deserted” at all, but full of life, and amazing shifting color palates that revolved around the movements of the sun. I saw more shapes, colors and textures in the desert than any landscape I’d encountered previously, and an abundance of plants with romantic names like “agave” and “ocotillo.” And weird things, inexplicable stacks of boulders balanced on the edge of a cliff, oversized cactus blossoms that only bloom at night and just once a year, and an aspen forest, covered in snow at the peak of Mt. Lemmon in the middle of the city, while miles below, it was eighty degrees and sunny.
Yeah, all kinds of weird and wondrous, but memories of the desert haunt me now that I’ve moved back to the northeast, and it seemed fitting to create my first landscape from those memories. And so, I am introducing the first of Hieropice’s new one-of-a-kind Landscape Terrarium Necklaces, the Sonoran Desert Terrarium Necklace.
My goal with this new line is to experiment with vessel shapes and sizes, creating miniatures incorporating a variety of techniques, like re-creating miniature plants from bits and pieces of other ones, hand-painting, dyeing, etc., with a focus on realism.
This first piece includes a miniature barrel cactus that I impregnated with a slew of little wire spines, a stack of stones that I created to match my memories of Mt. Lemmon, lichen tumbleweeds and layers of sand that I hand-dyed, to recreate the changing landscape of the desert.
Red-tipped agave, cholla, and of course, the iconic Saguaro cactus, that the Arizona desert would be bereft without.
There are a lot of other goodies tucked in there, and the piece so reminds me of the Sonoran, I wish I could crawl into it!
The new one of a kind (ooak) pieces will be just that, never to be reproduced, so when they’re sold, they’re gone. But I hope their new owners will enjoy having pieces that are unique, and knowing the one they own is the only one in existence.
I’ll be listing the new pieces on Etsy as I make them, so stay tuned for future landscapes!