Yesterday’s visit to the Gallery Underground was most productive while traveling along the walls as if in a canoe on a stream observing nature. Then, the flow was disrupted by a display case on which one shelf was filled with hippos. Yes, pottery hippos in various colors of glazes were assembled like a pod.
Trinka Roeckelein produced the little hippos.
“I am a sculptor working in clay to create both indoor and outdoor pieces, most of which contain an interpretation of a human or animal form. Occasionally I add a symbol derived from myth or a snippet of my subconscious to complete the sculpture. The inspiration for my most recent body of work, Safari in Clay, comes from several trips to Botswana.”
One thing leads to another as LeAnn Kalita once produced a painting of Trinka that also appears in the slideshow.
“LeAnn Kalita’s vibrant watercolors, elegant oils, and luscious acrylics reflect her passionate approach to art.
She is not a “quiet” painter – she uses color and paint lavishly, achieving her vivid luminescent hues by glazing numerous layers until she achieves her desired effect. This produces paintings that glow from within, containing their own light.”
Anyway, the hippos caught this artist and reviewer's attention because I have been creating a symphony orchestra in which various animals are auditioning for seats. They come into the studio and play their instruments as a tryout. I post the images on Facebook to get reactions like on the X-Factor. Then, the audience helps decide who will be in the orchestra. Hippos are in the clarinet section. Just don't rock the boat.
Hippos have long been the subject of artists as they have shown up in ancient tombs. Here is a link to the Met New York collection.
“This well-formed statuette of a hippopotamus (popularly called "William") demonstrates the Egyptian artist's appreciation for the natural world. It was molded in faience, a ceramic material made of ground quartz. Beneath the blue-green glaze, the body was painted with the outlines of river plants, symbolizing the marshes in which the animal lived.
The seemingly benign appearance that this figurine presents is deceptive. To the ancient Egyptians, the hippopotamus was one of the most dangerous animals in their world. The huge creatures were a hazard for small fishing boats and other rivercraft. The beast might also be encountered on the waterways in the journey to the afterlife. As such, the hippopotamus was a force of nature that needed to be propitiated and controlled, both in this life and the next. This example was one of a pair found in a shaft associated with the tomb chapel of the steward Senbi II at Meir, an Upper Egyptian site about thirty miles south of modern Asyut.”
PS: Anya Getter reminded me, "I am all about hippos."
Added a photo of Anya's children clothing.