December 08, 2003
Snow sculpture

The unignorable (I put that so I didn't have to start this sentence with a small letter) links to some pages of snow sculptures. This is one of my favourites:


One of the many huge boons bestowed upon us by photography is that inherently ephemeral objects such as snow sculptures can live on permanently in our affections. When we can take ten snaps from different directions, feed them all into our PC, and crank out a 3D image in some form, such as a view of the thing on our screens that we can virtually walk around and in among, if you get my drift (hah! - snow, drift), then snow sculpture will become even more productive as a means of entertainment and spiritual uplift.

Probably this is already possible. When I say "we", I mean when we all do it because it is so cheap and so easy and so routine, and our computer savvier mates can tell us how to do it. And when even I know how to do it.

On the basis of such records, maybe the best snow sculptures could be recreated in more durable materials. In icing sugar, for example.

I once did a snow sculpture myself, when I was at school. There was for a House Exhibition" in which the creative and showy offy among us showed off our various creations, and it coincided with some snow and and with enough coldness to allow snow sculpture to last a bit. So in the courtyard outside the main indoor exhibition area (the house dining hall), and clearly visible from inside, I did a reclining man.

My collaborator in art was, to begin with, a member of the Keynes clan by the name of Randall. He wanted us to do a fake Henry Moore, with a hole where the man's stomach should have been. I vetoed this as pretentious and stupid. I knew even then that a genuine and serious effort to get the man looking right was better by far than some ironically distanced knock-off of someone else's hard won discoveries about the sculpting of the human form. Randall Keynes resigned from the project. Good riddance. I finished it on my own.

Somewhere, I think I even have a photo of this effort.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 03:03 PM
Category: PhotographySculpture