Stones in the Mudd
John Palmquist, Sculptor
For the most part, Palmquist selects and collects the stones for his sculptures from the rocky coast of Lake Superior in Michigan's upper peninsula. The stones are derived from the Precambrian rocks of Ontario and the native Michigan bedrock. Original angular shapes develop from rock fractures. Rounding develops during the varied histories of the rocks, including sculpting by water, glacial transport, and lastly by the repeated pounding of the Lake Superior surf. The specimens, beautiful objects themselves, are chosen for their shape, texture, and fabric, with special attention to variations in color and patterns of veins. These features play important roles in the selection of the rocks and later during the positioning of stones in the work.
In assembling the stones, Palmquist strives for simplicity and balance to achieve a result that transcends the materials. The finished pieces are abstract yet organic, resulting in both a tension and precariousness in the individual works. The Zen-like quality embodied in the arrangements encourages contemplation and reflection.
California artist Woods Davy has inspired Palmquist's work.
|Source of the Stones|