Wand Fisch - a sculpture project in pictures. Mainly. Oh, no, I've began to type waffle. sorry.
The Pagan fish symbol
The 'fish symbol' is today instantly recognised as a Christian symbol but this symbol was in use by Pagans for many generations before Christianity.
Ask any Neopagan and they will explain the most common interpretation is its derivation from a simplified image of a woman's womb or vagina. The fish symbol was often drawn by overlapping two thin crescent moons, signifying a woman's monthly cycle. (See also Lunate Cross.)
In Babylonian mythology, a fish pushed a giant egg out of the river Euphrates, and from this egg emerged the mermaid and fertility goddess of the seas, Atargatis.
The son of Atargatis was named Ichthys; a name later used by Christians to refer to Jesus. See the Ichthys Cross.
There are a few other Pagan goddesses and gods that manifest themselves as dolphin, fish or other sea creature, and most seem to be connected with sexuality. The oval outline of a fish was compared to the shape of the womb, and both 'fish' and 'womb' homophonously shared the ancient Greek word delphos. (See also Dolphin Cross.)
My mate said to me when I was quite upset once upon a time over a girl, many moons ago, "Don't be sad," he said, "there are many more fish in the sea." Now I wonder if he'd been reading Dr Irman's book explaining the fish as a symbol of female sexuality. A book I read that inspired this sculpture. Nice one Justin.
In order to make this wall sculpture even more meaningful and profound, yes, profound, I did say that, I decided to make this fish from found materials from the local coast.
I collected appropriate Bournemouth beach stones that were the right shape for the fins detail and inner body bits and some that I could shape easily in to stickle like details. I like stickle fish. Not sure why. Although this isn't strictly a stickle fish. It's just a fish fish.
The Portland stone I liberated from West Bay which was really really tough stone to shape, unlike any other Portland I have carved before. Really bloody hard stone.
The metal wire and embedded bits I found on Hengistbury Head beach, left there I think by careless coastal engineers a few weeks before. It was not rusted at that point in time and I was unsure how it would colour when it would rust. It worked out well.
Below are some images of the sculpture in the making and one of it finished. This is part one of this entry. Part two, which will follow soon enough with more photo's and will ramble on and on and on about how I love the sculptures natural weathering over a short period of time in the salty air coastal atmosphere here, where I live. I find it exciting. No one else does. Typical.
Okay, I''ll shut up now. Pictures:
More images to be added to this blog entry soon and part two will follow when I find time. As ever, creating this piece of art was incredibly therapeutic and calming to my constantly noisy and conflicted mind. I need this. I need to be creative. It makes me alive.
More fishy tails soon. Sorry.