Rae’s Art

I (Math) am going to be adding to this blog on a weekly basis, if this works out.  My plan is to each week present one of Rae’s works of Art, and tell some of the back story behind it, some from memory, some from her own words.  Please feel free to add anything you remember about these pieces, if you have seen them before, or comment on them if you have not.

I am going to start with a Broom from her original broom show, one of the first she did, “Egypt Remembered”  First a photo, taken shortly after we moved to Madison, in our kitchen/studio (wherever you have space, you can work).  Click to enlarge.

Rae with first broom

Rae with first broom

Egypt Remembered is now in the collection of Mary and Rob Dumlao, in Chicago.  The broom has a walnut shaft, carved at the top to emulate wheat, with an ankh at the very top, flanked by 2 crescents of oak to symbolize Hathor’s horns.  The “skirt” as Rae called it, is  dark dyed broom corn.

It was in the show Sweeping Changes, inNovember 1990 at the UW-Madison Art Department Gallery.  Here is a pic of that installation, which included 13 brooms:

BROOM-SHOW

Like many of her pieces, this started as a dream, then she sketched it out, found the wood, and started working on it.  I helped her figure out how to attach the “horns” to the walnut, I remember her cutting, rasping, using a spokeshave and chisels.  We had a little fold-up workbench/sawhorse that she clamped the piece to.  I helped do some final sanding, and made a little spool thing to help hold the string as she wound it around the broomcorn.  I still recall the feel of that broom when held, it seemed to pulse with energy.

More pics:

Egypt Remembered in Sweeping Changes show

Egypt Remembered in Sweeping Changes show

Detail of Egypt Remembered

Detail of Egypt Remembered

Detail of Skirt

Detail of Skirt

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One Response to “Rae’s Art”

  1. Thomas Lund says:

    Thanks for doing this Math – it’s very good to hear about the process that Rae went through to produce these amazing pieces. It’s also just good to hear about Rae.

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