M.L. SNOWDEN SCULPTURE
STELLAR SPHERE GROUP
Polaris, the second sculpture of M.L. Snowden’s Celestial Array, joins with Meteorite, Lunas, Heliocore , Solaris and Sirius to form the Stellar Sphere Group - a collection of new sculpture that stands as an advancement for the art of lost wax bronze. The figurative focal point of Polaris blazes outward from concentric bands of bronze. Within this trellis of conceptual fire and light, the sculptor richly imagines the central spirit of the brilliant North Star that for centuries has been revered by humankind for the constancy of its illumination and cardinal polar direction. As a sculptural meditation on the power of light to dispel darkness, Polaris is a symbol of hope. As Snowden reflects, “When we look up at the stars, we are seeing light that has traveled over vast parsecs of space - we are perceiving the light of stars from eons ago. But the light still lives on and that light registers within our eyes as an enduring concept that nothing of appointed energy is truly lost in this universe.”
Polaris, as a sculptural meditation, expresses M.L. Snowden’s central idea that the very substance of humankind, stars, planetary masses and bronze are created of the same interrelated yet differently arranged elements. Within this meditation, the smelted ores of iron, copper, lead, tin, aluminum, gold, silver, titanium, platinum, silicon, and other substances that make up Snowden’s lost wax bronze, come together in Polaris - just as the interstellar cores that are composed of these and other elements, collect and condense to the point where they begin to radiate light in star formation. Indeed, within each masterful step, from creating the clay to the pouring of the bronze, a burgeoning sculpted form gradually condenses sculptural materials, affirming that the art of sculpture for Snowden is an art of compression. Indeed, the way clay adheres around the gravity of an armature intuits the condensing of interstellar mass - to the point where compressed mass forms a planet. If the mass of a planet continues to compress under gravity, that mass will begin to emit light and a star is born. As Snowden’s annealing pressurized handwork on her sculpture progresses, the artist recognizes that a particular sculpture is complete when it begins to possess warm levels of a subcernal glow. In beholding the glazed sculpture of Polaris, there can be no doubt that hundreds of hours of an exquisite artistic touch has awakened an extraordinary tactile bronze surface.
And, it is through this rich surface that we are invited to place our hands upon Polaris and enter into an awakened perception of the sculpture. The central figure of Polaris is strong and lithe with an emotive visage that reaches into a universal enigma. In Polaris, Snowden connects humankind to stars, seeing stellar structures as related to our own completed human nucleus of form. If the universe is an expression of fractal mathematics as described by Mandelbrot, and Wolfram, then Snowden, with Polaris, has formed a cutting edge contemporary portrait of the ethos of fractal scale that reverberates, repeats and reveals the pantheon of created forms across the universe. In brief, the composition of Polaris depicts the profound and reverberating concept of a nucleus surrounded by an energy web. The sculpture forms a veritable locus immortalizing this formation that appears across various incarnations through human and comic structures.
Polaris has been sculpted by Snowden into new levels of metallurgical virtuosity. Polaris’s elongated figural centerpiece is welded into its floating position on an intricate corona of bronze. M.L. Snowden invented the protocols and specific foundry wax that makes the casting of Polaris possible.