Construction of Metal Stand for Juniper
Though this little Juniper has already made a cameo or two on the blog, this post is a photo essay of the construction and thinking behind its new metal support.
Enjoy the photos!
A few of our elements for this project: A Rocky-mountain Juniper (collected courtesy Backcountry Bonsai), grafted about 10 years ago with Itoigawa shimpaku; the original nylon slab (lower right); the new 3D-printed slab (lower left); and part of the metal structure where the tree will be attached.
This was amazing. Collaborator Kevin Bennett made our 3D-printed slab, which is plastic. What was so cool was he found printing material that had fine iron dust in it. Which meant we could patina it and have it blend in with the patinated metal support. That’s the marvelous earthy-toned thing we’re looking at here, rusted plastic. Erich, my other collaborator, is making wiring holes.
Siting the juniper on the 3D-printed slab. The root mass needed reduction to fit on this smaller slab.
This is where the slab will attach with bolts.
Attachment of the new 3D-printed slab to metal structure.
Here’s the metal slinky-like support, about 3’ long.
Here is one tangle we tussled over. This is an earlier shot of the support. The bouncing slinky seemed simpler if—as a visual story—it bounced onto the table and then rebounded into another arc. One bounce in, once bounce out. But here we thought we needed the structural support of the third metal strip in the middle, but it looked busy. And Erich said he’d try to take it out. Like the wizard he is, he succeeded. In short, the first try was overly complex, and to make a clearer visual story we simplified it by taking one metal strip out.
And here’s the Juniper on the slinky stand. The thinking behind this one is time. How a tree changes, with the slinky-like bounces of the metal support (hopefully) giving a sense of passage of time, setbacks, advances—the usual life stuff. Like a lot of visual art there’s no expectation someone would “get” that looking at it, but the idea serves as a scaffolding on which to create. Content can be mysterious, even if successful. Which is why we keep looking at art, I think. There’s often an unanswered question there.
This Juniper will be on display at the Pacific Bonsai Museum through September 2023.
For the first post on this Juniper about styling and placement on the nylon slab, try A Juniper Orchid
July 2023 Bulletin Board
- There’s an unexpected opening in the July 20-22 Seasonal! If you have interest please contact me at email@example.com