rolling about like a hoop snake, but for the most part wouldn’t enjoy much variety in its life. So, what if there was an ouroboros with the soul of an artist? An ouroboros with imagination? That’s how I came up with the idea of letting my ouroboros form, instead of a simple circle, a more interesting endless knot, also a symbol in cultures around the world, and also representing eternity.
As for the carving of this piece, my original design had the body simply patterned with lines for the scales, as in this first state rough draft. I decided to give it a little more interest by make a stripe of white scales run its length, so I carved some more. Alas, I think that may have been a mistake. I think the knot is clearer and the whole image cleaner-looking without the extra white, so perhaps I should have left well enough alone. But you can’t know ’til you’ve tried! So now, here he (or she) is: the ouroboros with the heart of a poet.
[Pictures: Ouroboros, wood block print from Abraham Eleazar's Uraltes Chymisches Werk, 1760;
The device of Barthélemy Aneau, wood block print from Picta poesis, 1552 (Image from Glasgow University);
First state test print by AEGN, 2014;
Ouroboros Makes a Poem, rubber block print by AEGN, 2014.]
NOTICE: Last Open Studio show before autumn: Dedham Open Studios, Sunday, May 18, 11:00-5:00.