Often it is a single object that launches a project. It may not turn out to be the focal point. It may not even end up in the finished project, but the shape, material, mood, or memory that it stirs, will set the tone of the piece. It is such with the piece this proposal covers.
The basic simplicity of the shape and the rust patina is what initially caught my eye, figure 1. These two elements will be the base of the piece, creating a simple aesthetic.
Adding like objects will reinforce the shape and patina, and help to creates unity, figure 2.
In Buddhism, the circle symbolizes enlightenment and wholeness. Looking at the objects, a mandala comes to mind. The mandala represents the universe or the self. The rust patina of the objects suggests aging. My proposal is to create a mandala representing my life as I head into old age, the natural cycle of life.
The Buddhist concept of the void fits in with the negative space in the metal frame. The gears are representative of the infinite time spectrum, time marches on. The circular shapes echo the cycle of life.
One style of mandalas consists of rings, the ‘charnel grounds’, representing dying; a reminder of the impermanence and transient nature of life. Within the rings lies the mandala palace, populated by deities and Buddhas. While not adhering to the classic mandala, I will endeavor towards these ideals.
The difficulty I foresee will be the weight of the objects. The metal frame and the gears are very heavy. I would like to make a hanging piece but the weight of the objects may be too great. Alternatively a standing piece may be a possibility.
Another challenge will be assembling the pieces. As we are dealing with metal, welding comes to mind. But the wonderful rust patina may be damaged.
There is the possibility of wire or chain to place the objects. These avenues of attachment will need to be explored.