Getting Connected

Getting Connected


Our sculpture shows a man holding up a child and spending time with him.

The sculpture evolved out a completely different sculpture created for the 2000 sculpting session. The original sculpture had workers building communication towers in efforts to get connected. The focus of that sculpture was the irony of ever increasing networks of communication without corresponding value on interpersonal communication. The sculpture moved through many versions, constantly being reworked to further remove the negative aspects and focus on the more positive message of communication. Eventually the idea was distilled to two figures in a pure, simple moment of connection.

The figures stood larger than life size and the entire sculpture measured over 11 feet tall.

Getting Connected was created in January/February, 2002 on the banks of Dow's Lake in Ottawa. The sculpture took second place in the General Public category.





Click to view the "Getting Connected" photo gallery

Daily Updates

2001/12/31 - Seriously discuss possibility of returning to sculpting after several meetings with Aldo over the last several months to offer our perspective on changes to the City of Ottawa Ice Dream (now Snowscapes). Several team members were keen on the idea, emails were sent out to gauge amount of interest.

2002/01/10 - Agreed to do sculpture and also discuss possibility of doing City of Ottawa logo sculpture.

2002/01/15 - Sculpture orientation. Jeffco Productions will again be contributing to discussion on how to sculpt.

2002/01/22 - Team meeting to go over final details, days of sculpting, contingency plans, etc. Final plans for the poster explaining our sculpture are completed and the poster will be ordered tomorrow so it will be ready for Friday. Business cards with the website address and email address for the team were distributed to everyone who came.

2002/01/23 - Poster sent to print.

2002/01/24 - Sculpture start officially delayed by one week because of warm temperatures and forecasts of rain.

2002/02/01 - Head down to the sculpture site to stake out a site and prepare molds to freeze overnight. Finished four molds and poured water on the base around our sculpture to make sure the ground is solid. It was freezing rain for some of the time and most of the snow was poor quality but it's supposed to snow some tonight so we hope that will help. We left the metal tubes to freeze and will return tomorrow with a larger contingent to start building legs.

Measuring everything, over and over again

2002/02/02 - 2002/02/09 - Snow sculpture construction.

2002/02/02 - Bitterly cold day, at 15 degrees below without the wind-chill, and there was quite the breeze coming off the canal. Turnout was good however with Dave, Jeff, Lori, Rustin, Laura, Mike and Keith coming out to help. Everyone was optimistic at the site too because the cold temperatures seem to indicate the canal would be open for skating as early as tomorrow. We managed in the cold to extract the frozen tubes and anchor in the two legs and to begin to build the hips. This is a great starting point, especially since the cold temperatures will allow them to freeze nice and solid. We'll meet again tomorrow to continue adding height.

2002/02/03 - Temperature was much better, probably minus 8 without the nasty wind. We did well and hit our schedule even with fewer people turning out and more visitors (always welcome). We met a nice couple from Vermont who watched out Tibet sculpture in 1999 over the web and they said they'd check the web again for this years. That was nice. We also met a high school teacher from our old high school, which was also nice. Things progressed almost too easily and the shape of the legs looks great. The organizers seem to have everything under control this year, so as long as people start to come out more and see the sculptures, it should be a very successful year.

2002/02/04 - Seemed a lot colder than the posted minus 11 with a wind-chill adjustment to minus twenty. It was a hard day because there were few visitors and even fewer team members. Jeff, Dave and Mike, that was it for today. Still, we managed to stay on schedule and add the torso, rough out the head and two babies (in case one drops). It was fun though and also a relief that the torso was able to stand on the legs. That was the biggest concern for me because all told, it's probably in excess of 400 pounds for what's standing on it's on out there. No small feat.

2002/02/05 - We're moving too fast... The process seems to be working too well. The weather's cooperating with our sculpting style and as a result we're about a day ahead of schedule. This is good of course but we want to make sure everyone has stuff to do when they arrive. The head and left arm went on easily today after sundown and we began shaping one baby. Everything seems to be holding nicely so we are optimistic we'll be able to have the baby up and in place on time. Oh yeah, we also were featured in a local paper with a caption explaining that we're putting on the finishing touches. We thought that was funny. At the time it was only a lower abdomen and legs and they think we're putting on finishing touches. A joke I guess only a sculptor would appreciate.

2002/02/06 - Pretty uneventful. We have way too much time and only a little bit of work left to do. We did finer detailing on the body, and made one good baby and one partial baby, then remade the first baby after a small accident. The weather is expected to turn warmer tomorrow so there is no point rushing ahead only to have to do repair work Friday. We hope to do a big push Friday and be done early so we can relax and enjoy the last day on Saturday. We're also enjoying hanging around and speaking with the other sculptors. It seems like much more of a community this year. Maybe it's the different organizers, maybe it's the smaller venue, maybe it's the fact that it was missed last year - whatever it was, it seems to be working. Now if only more people would come out and actually see the sculptures...

Preparing the adult figure to receive the child

2002/02/07 - This will go down in history as one of the slowest sculptures we've ever done. Temperature hit a high of 4 degrees today and that pretty much left us with nothing to do. We couldn't attach the other arm yet because the warm temperatures wouldn't freeze the slush fast enough. So, we cleaned up the site, chatted with visitors and went home early. Tomorrow is the big day, when we see if it holds or not...

2002/02/08 - We finished the essentially finished the sculpture today. The temperature was perfect so we added the left arm first thing, then worked on the baby while the arm set up, then when more help started arriving, we added the baby to the top of the arms. The whole sculpture was almost too easy. If it falls down tomorrow, at least we'll know we were able to do it. It was nice finishing early, it allowed us to talk with visitors and the public more. There was a lot of the 'gee whiz' factor going on. Some people were openly admitting they didn't think we could do it, after we had the baby attached. It was nice to prove them wrong. Overall we're very happy with it, the only disappointment being the far fewer numbers of people coming out to see it this year. We're going to go down tomorrow and see if more people don't come because it's the weekend. I sure hope more people do come... It was something to see the baby going on though, almost like a Renaissance deposition from the cross scene, as seven people maneuvered around scaffolding and a ten foot ladder, dragging up slush and a baby and water, holding lights, and measuring sticks, and anything else we needed. It was something to see, and it only lasted a few minutes, for a few people to see. That might have been the most amazing part of the sculpture.

2002/02/09 - A much better day as crowds actually began to arrive and see the sculptures. Our baby held up and didn't fall or even shift. We didn't have much to do but polish this and smooth that, but in the end I don't think any of the things we did today changed the look or perception of our sculpture, it was all decided yesterday. It was nice to see some friends and regular visitors, and have the time to talk to other teams. Frankly we hung around too long in the cold with nothing to do but eavesdrop on passersby and find out what they thought (I think the reaction was all positive). With it done, I look forward to many more months without people asking me if we intend to do another one. I'll answer that question when the time comes, but again I think we've left an impression that we don't have much to prove to ourselves. Some great picture of the sculpture as the sun goes down, those were nice.

2002/02/10 - Results are in a Jeffco Productions took 2nd place in the General Public category. We were pretty happy with it. We thought we'd take third. We thought we'd be beaten by Rondo and by Joe Public, previous winner who made incredible efforts again this year. We were instead beaten by Friends of Smib who also did a good sculpture but to be honest I never saw the finished result because we left early Saturday. As I say though, we're happy with the result. Actually, we couldn't believe it and had no idea how we were going to spend the $300 prize money. Afterwards we discovered it would basically cover our expenses. It was good to see the teams again in civilian clothes although the get-together ended rather abruptly after the awards and we didn't get a chance to congratulate many teams. It's too bad though because there were some spectacular efforts, including some from first time sculptors. I wanted to tell Carleton ID what a great job they had done, even though they had gotten second in their category. St Pats also did wonderful. There were many more great sculptures than I remember in on sculpting year, even though we had far fewer entrants. Unfortunately as we were accepting the award, the rain started to fall and probably condemned a good number of them to an early death. Our baby may survive the day but the odds aren't with it. Oh well, hopefully people made it down already, or got a chance to check out our pictures. I know my whole team is deservedly proud of their efforts and very happy with the outcome.

Cleaning up the area around the sculpture