Thursday, 18 August 2011

Greek boy.

54. Greek boy, plaster cast, 127 cm high.

We have lugged this unwieldy plaster cast with us on each successive house move. He stands now in his most cramped position to date in our small study, his hands outstretched to the book shelves, his fingers forever unable to hold a book. He was formerly missing a few fingers, not to mention other essential parts of his anatomy. The metal armature stuck out from the palms of his hands until Peter began repairs with fine scrim and fresh plaster. It resulted in my poor Greek boy looking as though he had just returned from Accident and Emergency.
In our previous home he was placed on his plinth in the conservatory where a climbing hoya made good use of his outstretched arms. 

One evening a visiting American lecturer came to supper. He studied the cast and Peter said, "We all think of the Greek ideal of beauty and the subtlety of their carving, but look at this - they were no good at fingers." The lecturer looked more closely and agreed. (He laughed about it later!)

We have a selection of casts, all acquired from schools and colleges at a time when they were being thrown away, unwanted. 

55. Marble fragments, 5 and 4 cms high.

These small heads were rescued from a builder who knocked them from a damaged urn because he 'liked' them! We have the vandalised pieces, four in total; two sections of the urn and these heads. We noted the way that small fragments were displayed at the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford and Peter got to work with blocks of wood, metal rod and glue to present ours in similar fashion.


  1. SNAP. I acquired mine in the late 60's when they were being thrown out by the barrow load. I still have one head, and a Corinthian capital. Most of the others (that were used as garden ornaments) had since melted away! I should have kept them indoors.

  2. Cro, you must do your hundred objects! It prompts all kinds of memories. I would be fascinated to see what you would choose!

  3. I have no such item in my Midwest garden, Instead only wheelbarrows, old claw foot tubs and a few stone planters. I like this fellow though. May he reign a long time

  4. Dear Donna, 'this fellow' would not last one season in the garden - rain would just wash him away. He's safely tucked up indoors, and although he's a cumbersome object I'm very fond of him!

  5. You may be amused to hear that at the same time as I rescued MY plaster casts, I also rescued a few studio easels. About a dozen broken ones were piled up on a bonfire awaiting a match, and I asked the caretaker if I could take them. Out of the dozen, I managed to assemble 4 complete easels. Waste not, want not!

  6. Four easels, Cro that was good going! I acquired a few wooden 'donkeys' when I got the casts. I gave them away only a few years ago to an ex-student of Peter's who runs an art group.(Every now and then I attempt to de-clutter, but it's an ability I don't seem to possess.)