Ventura Harbor Fishermen’s Memorial Process and Archive
The Ventura Harbor Fisherman’s Memorial was first little more than a dream, then the dream was translated into a tangible concept,and then the concept was shared with others before it could become a reality. What followers is a visual representation of my dream becoming a reality. The “Creation Process” of the “Ventura Harbor Fishermen’s Memorial” is here documented with step by step images of how to install ceramic tile and incorporate ceramic tile design into ceramic tileworks, with short written explanations. The entire process covers a time span of five years during which time I was “Artist in Residence” at Ventura Harbor Village, California.
This is where I imagined the Fishermen’s Memorial Arch, close to the Harbor’s unloading dock on the quay at Ventura Harbor, CA; and here I stand arms up trying to imagine the actual space the “Artwork” would occupy.
A sketch I did for my own reference.
My intention was to have a front and back to the Fishermen’s Memorial Arch, with two life sized local fishermen on each side. I found four local men who were willing to be caste in Plaster of Paris. I then photographed them in poses that might work on the memorial.
This in turn gave me a better working idea for casting the men in plaster. I was given help building and filling an enormous sand box outside my studio at the Harbor. The owners of the Ventura Harbor Boatyard, Kim and Dale, very kindly gave me six men to complete this jobone winter afternoon. Here are a series of images showing the casting process in my enormous sandpit.
This will be the shape of the clay after the plaster has been applied and the clay has been pressed into the mold.
This will be the shape of the clay after the plaster has been applied and the clay has been pressed into the mold.Michael in a casteThis will be the shape of the clay after the plaster has been applied and the clay has been pressed into the mold.
Berni’s face mold, commonly known as a death mask, ha ha
This is the end result of 2 of the castes. A lovely image of Berni in brown high fire clay from Laguna Clay Company.
Here I am painting the wet clay with engobes, slips and mineral stains.
Now we will shift gears and look at the architectural aspect of the Artwork.
An enormous foundation was dug in the ground and cinder blocks were built into a maze of rebar to creat the skeleton of the Memorial.
The sides of the Arch begin to appear.
The form is complete and waiting for the cement truck to pour wet cement into the styrofoam mold on the top.
Now the work is focused on mounting the tiles, some of which weigh over fifty pounds.
After: Michael Aaron Moberg
[/slideshow]Bernie, Kip and Lee and Mike mounted on the memorial