Sheena McCorquodale, sculpting full sized figures from chicken wire

Back in the 80s, I worked full time for a TV studio doing graphics and on off hours I worked for local community theatre companies doing set design and props. Papier mache over wire structures was the quick answer for a number of set props. I started experimenting with papier mache for my home, sculpting full sized figures from chicken wire then covering them with fabric, plaster and paint. I’ve done a lot of life drawing from the figure which has given me a good sense of body proportions and translates to sculpting subjects.

5 years ago when I opened my cat kennel, I found the sign bylaws to be restrictive. I was only allowed 1 small sign on the highway in front of my place but there wasn’t a problem with putting 6′ cats on my roof. Requests for sculpture classes started coming in and I learned so much from teaching. With each new sculpture I learn a new method, or expand my abilities for refinement and developing my skill set.

I love listening to audio books. They allow me to keep my hands busy and my eyes engaged while being transported into different worlds of the mind. Depending on the book, their subjects often influence what I’m working on and their characters can work their way into the sculpture I’m working on.

I love the ethereal look of leaving the wire uncovered. There are a number of benefits using the wire in this method.
•The wire is galvanized so rust isn’t an issue. I paint them to add contrast to them against the dark forest background.
•They are lightweight. A full sized female figure is around 45pounds
•The wind whistles through them. They don’t act as a sail. The cats have been up for 5 years and have never blown over.
•The combination of light weight and lack of wind resistance makes installation really easy and placing them in precarious places like roof tops isn’t an issue.
Sheena McCorquodale
May 29, 2021