Two castles, mostly unalike in material,
In fair Florida, where we lay our scene,
From ancient copper to new inflation,
Where grand ideas make strange castles.
From forth the hands of Libris Craft
A pair of structurally unsound castles take their life;
Whose tall towers and open gate invite siege
Do with their construction show the fragility of all things.
The fraught construction of their impermanent forms,
And the grand destruction thereof,
Which, by their ending, no proof remains,
Is now the graphic praxis of this page;
To which if you with patient eyes attend,
What here I've missed, my pictures shall strive to mend.*
Castle of Copper
This started as part of Misanthropology's and my tasking weekend. I got really excited about building a castle out of Sir J's penny hoard, and so set about it.
I lay out paper, so that the copper would not get all over the table, and started piling pennies. But I quickly discovered that the piles of pennies wanted to fall down. Lots.
I finally construct a castle of sorts.
However, my pictures of this have disappeared. But I love my prologue so much, I can't bear to not include my description of it.
Castle of Air (and latex)
So, I wasn't satisfied with my penny castle. My vision of towering walls of pennies had succumbed to gravity. I knew I wanted to try again before declared this task done.
One day, I was at work, thinking about this task. And I re-wrote the prologue to Romeo and Juliet as a prologue to my praxis. As I worked on it, I had a vision of a castle built of balloons, floating in a pond.
Well, today I decided to make it happen. Now, I, once upon a time, twisted balloons professionally. But I had not done that for a while, and this was a much larger project than I had ever done before.
I decided to use the silver balloons that I had a large quantity of, and began to build the outer walls.
I used several balloons to make the base, twisting them together, as you can see here.
Then, I started on the tower. I used a similar technique to the outer walls, going round and round and adding balloons as needed.
Up, up, up went the tower, and then... the tunnel.
Alright, it was the drawbridge and tunnel.
Here is the mostly complete castle.
I say mostly complete, because I sat around waiting for people to wake up, and I kept adding to the castle.
Here you can see the new roof of the tower, the yellow mouse, who rules the castle, and the purple reindeer outside.
Then, we set off to the Ringling Museum of Art. It was Monday, which meant free admission to the art museum. And the grounds had several ponds on which I could float my creation.
But first, I had to make it through security. As I walked into the museum entrance, the security guard flagged me down, and asked me what I planned to do with my balloons. She informed me that she was tasked with making sure that certain items, including balloons, could not enter the museum. I informed her that my plan was to float my castle in one of the ponds, retrieve it, and dispose of it.
"Let me talk to my supervisor, it should take about two minutes." She told me. I agreed, and sat patiently while she phoned to the main office. In the mean time, I had many admiring glances from both adults and children. Eventually, the security guard came back: the word was that as long as I was careful not to fall in, I was welcome to float my castle. She was even happy to pose for me.
She made sure I had a map of where all the ponds were, and was overall delighted with my deciding to use the Ringling grounds for my art project.
As I walked in, I saw this lovely anhinga on the statue next to the first pond I tried.
The first pond had a breeze that kept blowing my castle back towards the sharp and pointy grass. So I decided to move to another pond: this one with a bridge across it.
When I got to the bridge, I was having problems holding the castle, retying the string, and holding the camera. A family was walking behind me, and seemed very interested in my project, and I soon drafted them to help me. the youngest held the string, and the mother donated her pocket knife to help me cut the string to re-tie it to the top. She also agreed to take some pictures while I lowered the castle.
Here is the castle, floating majestically:
The youngest asked me what I was planning to do with the castle. I told her that I was planning to dispose of it, so I could go to the museum afterwards. She asked if she could have it instead. I said certainly, as long as she had her mother's permission. Her mother was very amused, and agreed. The whole family was excited, and we took many pictures of the castle.
I eventually ended up explaining about SF0, and inviting them to find me here.
I was very happy with my final castle, and pleased it found a home.
*With many apologies to Shakespeare, my prologue was based on his.
Romeo and Juliet
Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
From forth the fatal loins of these two foes
A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;
Whose misadventured piteous overthrows
Do with their death bury their parents' strife.
The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,
And the continuance of their parents' rage,
Which, but their children's end, nought could remove,
Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage;
The which if you with patient ears attend,
What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.