UPDATE: Congrats to Arelis Cintron for Winning! Please email me your mailing address and I’ll be sure they get in the mail! TheBusyNothingsATGmail.com
One of my favorite phrases that continues to define different aspects on my life has been “beauty from ashes”. As I watched local artist Hank Kaminisky pouring molten bronze into hand crafted forms- fire and smoke filling the air dramatically- and later sweeping off the ashy sand from the still smoldering heap, I felt that I saw my phrase acted out from start to finish.
I drew closer and read the inscription still smoky with flames… “you are standing on sacred ground” and felt shivers. There was an ancient feeling to watching the molten bronze being poured and I felt privileged to be standing there.
Art has always been important to me. I always made decent grades in school but I was never smart without trying really, really hard. I felt like school was never natural and although I excelled in the writing parts of English and fell into History books like a romance, my art class is where I felt alive. I still remember the first moment I realized I was good, when an art teacher hovering at my elbow snatched up my pencil sketched cassette tape (remember what those were?!) and held it up to the class, explaining this is how it should be done. I glowed. I had faced a lot of peer rejection that and the previous year after transferring to a small town, cliquish school. This was a good day.
Since that time, art has had a special place in my soul. Getting invited to see behind the scenes a type of art I am unfamiliar with such as bronze pouring, was as exciting for me as a football fan getting to see their team play in a a championship game or getting backstage tickets to your favorite band. I was giddy. I was able to see the bronze in a liquid state, transferred very carefully a short ways to the mold, then see it poured. We waited a short while and toured the studio, then watched the fiery unveiling of the latest piece.
I heard about Hank’s life. I heard his passions and got to see inside of a brilliant person in a way that is rare. I saw his tools, other finished projects and discarded ones. I saw years of his work collected together and I got to meet the man behind some of my favorite sculptures around the Northwest Arkansas area. He is revered in these parts. I loved hearing his story- read more about him here. My favorite sculpture of his is a huge bronze globe that can be turned like a prayer wheel located at the Fayetteville Town Center.
I learned something else that night, however. He isn’t just a sculptor, he also makes wearable art; pieces of sculpted jewelry, each with a meaningful story.
and guess what? Today I get to share some art with you, the kind you can wear proudly. I am giving away the below pair of earrings! Hank Kaminsky’s Cave Dreams. Good Luck!