|Today I received an email from Dick on cast paper sculpture, featuring pics of several stunningly beautiful sculptures. I was intrigued so I 'Googled' for more information. Thought you might be interested in what I learned, especially since the Eckmans are from this area. And the pics are wonderful! Enjoy!
Cast paper sculpture has been around since the 1950's but should not be confused with papier-mache'. The two mediums are completely different. The artists first mix an acid free paper pulp in the studio hydro-pulper from two raw stocks, cotton and abica. Then the pulp is cast into molds which were made from original clay sculptures. The paper is then pressed under vacuum pressure or by hand in the mold where most of the water is extracted at the same time. The drying process is completed by evaporation while the paper is still in the mold. After the dry and hard casts are removed from the molds the exclusive process of chasing, cast additions, cast alterations, sculpting in paper and detailing begins. It takes a great amount of time and experience to create each piece. Some works are so painstakingly detailed they can take many months to complete. The cast paper process is similar to the cast bronze method in many ways. Of course, the finished product is white, light weight and can have an enormous amount of detail because of it's properties and the couples’ inventiveness.
The Eckmans are the inventors of this process and the Eckman Method® of Cast Paper Sculpture is a trade mark of theirs alone. Since 1988 Patty and Allen have developed and perfected the medium of cast paper far beyond any other artist in the world. Their work is considered to be the premier of the industry by many critics. Since the paper is acid free the sculptures are all museum quality. "We have really enjoyed the development of our fine art techniques over the years and have created a process that is worth sharing. There are many artists and sculptors who we believe will enjoy this medium as much as we have."
"When I was a small boy in Pennsylvania I found an arrowhead in a newly plowed field and took it home to my grandfather who told me his grandmother was a full blooded Cherokee. I really am interested in the Indian's material, physical and spiritual culture and that whole period of our nation's history I find fascinating. From the western expansion, through the Civil War and beyond is of great interest to me." Eckman has expanded his work through all these subjects . Patty has a great interest in wildlife, birds and flowers in particular. "Ever since I was a child I have had a great appreciation of wildlife. I can sit for hours and watch the birds come to my feeder. When I look at a flower I don't see just color, I see form. Wonderful shapes that the color tries to overpower." Patty also has interests in the Native American culture and since the year 2000 has been sculpting beautiful Indian woman and children. On large complicated and detailed works the couple often work together and both sign the piece when completed.
The Eckmans now reside in Rapid City, South Dakota. Their home and studio is in the beautiful Black Hills. There, the couple finds inspiration everywhere. The wildlife, the history, the climate and the spirituality of their lives provide Patty and Allen with an enormous amount of creativity.
You can see, and purchase, many more of their beautiful creations here: