Arp’s Muse, 2013
• indiana limestone & granite
• 18” H x 8” W x 4” D (46cm H x 20cm W x 10cm D)
When Michael Binkley began carving this sculpture, he had thoughts of ancient Cycladic sculpture in his head and wanted to create an abstract female figure.
Binkley loves the image of the Greek amphora jar and its similarity to the hourglass female form and he used that as a basis for the profile of this piece. The stylized head, which looks upward, and the breasts appear as orbs protruding from a stem-like torso.
When the sculptor finished it, he saw resemblances to Jean Arp’s work, so that inspired the artwork title. The sculpture is carved from a variety of limestone that is quarried in the state of Indiana, USA and is rather deceptive in appearance. Being a sedimentary stone, it is made up of many layers of ancient seabeds and tiny shell shards are evident in the grain of the stone. This gives the appearance of being rough to the eye, however when one touches the sculpture, there is a surprise as it is silky smooth under one’s fingers. It stands on a black granite base, secured by a hidden steel pin. This is free to move, so one can view the sculpture from any desired angle.
Binkley left the surface with a matte finish which gives the stone the ability to hold shadows effectively.