October 2018 Balinese Mask Carving News


 For two weekends in October Tharp Carving Studio hosted Balinese guest artist Ida Bagus Anom Suryawan.

For two weekends in October Tharp Carving Studio hosted Balinese guest artist Ida Bagus Anom Suryawan.

 Balinese Mask Carving Workshop #1

Balinese Mask Carving Workshop #1

 Week one of Balinese mask carving. The first step was to rough out the mask design. Ashley and Twiggy are using the small hatchet to do some of the rougher work. The younger carvers sat Bali style right on the ground.

Week one of Balinese mask carving. The first step was to rough out the mask design. Ashley and Twiggy are using the small hatchet to do some of the rougher work. The younger carvers sat Bali style right on the ground.

 Here is Art working on his mask on the first day. The last mask that Art did at our last Balinese workshop was a representation of catching the biggest fish ever. This year he is doing a mask representing loosing the biggest fish ever. The two masks will live as a pair. The first being finely sanded. This years mask has many of the tool marks left to add to the feeling of loosing that big fish.

Here is Art working on his mask on the first day. The last mask that Art did at our last Balinese workshop was a representation of catching the biggest fish ever. This year he is doing a mask representing loosing the biggest fish ever. The two masks will live as a pair. The first being finely sanded. This years mask has many of the tool marks left to add to the feeling of loosing that big fish.

 Each mask was so unique. Art's mask is the third from the left. They all have some final work to do but they are all so very wonderful.

Each mask was so unique. Art's mask is the third from the left. They all have some final work to do but they are all so very wonderful.

 Here is Schuyler with Anom at the end of Workshop #1.

Here is Schuyler with Anom at the end of Workshop #1.

 Owen carved this serene and meditative mask.

Owen carved this serene and meditative mask.

 No doubt that Rise had fun carving. The weather was perfect and we all had delicious Balinese lunch.

No doubt that Rise had fun carving. The weather was perfect and we all had delicious Balinese lunch.

 Ashley, just like with her camphor bowl, worked tirelessly. Her mask with the open mouth was one of the more difficult designs, according to Anom.

Ashley, just like with her camphor bowl, worked tirelessly. Her mask with the open mouth was one of the more difficult designs, according to Anom.

 Balinese Mask Carving Workshop #2

Balinese Mask Carving Workshop #2

 Workshop #2 of Balinese Mask carving. Again it was a very diverse group. 12 year old Echo with 4 year of experience under her belt and John with just the Grapes and leaves carved. Elena has attended every Mask workshop since we started having them so this makes #5 for her.

Workshop #2 of Balinese Mask carving. Again it was a very diverse group. 12 year old Echo with 4 year of experience under her belt and John with just the Grapes and leaves carved. Elena has attended every Mask workshop since we started having them so this makes #5 for her.

 Martha was very skilled and limber. I think all of her spoon carving has paid off.

Martha was very skilled and limber. I think all of her spoon carving has paid off.

 Radhika, looks so happy to be carving some softer wood. Since Grapes and leaves she has only carved plum wood which is very, very hard and curly grained. The Pule wood is very soft and we soaked it in water over night to facilitate the fast and smooth removal of the wood.

Radhika, looks so happy to be carving some softer wood. Since Grapes and leaves she has only carved plum wood which is very, very hard and curly grained. The Pule wood is very soft and we soaked it in water over night to facilitate the fast and smooth removal of the wood.

 Echo at the end of day one. Pule wood (also know as Pulai), or by the scientific name  Alstonia scholaris  carves very well when wet. It takes and holds details really well and when dry it is very easy to sand, polish and paint. In my experience the wood is really good for masks since it is very sturdy yet very light when dry.

Echo at the end of day one. Pule wood (also know as Pulai), or by the scientific name Alstonia scholaris carves very well when wet. It takes and holds details really well and when dry it is very easy to sand, polish and paint. In my experience the wood is really good for masks since it is very sturdy yet very light when dry.

 Max, the studio cat, sat right on top of the reference books and in the middle of everything.

Max, the studio cat, sat right on top of the reference books and in the middle of everything.

 Echo mastered the use of the finishing knives very quickly. It is a bit tricky but this picture shows her safe and efficient use of the tool.

Echo mastered the use of the finishing knives very quickly. It is a bit tricky but this picture shows her safe and efficient use of the tool.

 Here are the final masks from Workshop #2. The one on the far right has a patch in the area right under the eye. When taking out the back of the mask it is so easy to take just one stroke too much. That low spot on either side of the nose next to the eye is way lower than you think so it is a common place to go too far.

Here are the final masks from Workshop #2. The one on the far right has a patch in the area right under the eye. When taking out the back of the mask it is so easy to take just one stroke too much. That low spot on either side of the nose next to the eye is way lower than you think so it is a common place to go too far.

  Tool Sharpening   Anom, shared with us that one day a year (Oct 27 this year) he lets his tools  rest.  The tools allow him to carve and provide for his family.  On that day he cleans and sharpens his tools and  then lays them out on an altar and offers them special foods, prayers and incense,  He thanks them for all their hard work.    On Saturday October 27 at 4PM- 6PM  Tools sharpening and Gratitude Berkeley Style.

Tool Sharpening 
Anom, shared with us that one day a year (Oct 27 this year) he lets his tools  rest.  The tools allow him to carve and provide for his family.  On that day he cleans and sharpens his tools and  then lays them out on an altar and offers them special foods, prayers and incense,  He thanks them for all their hard work.  

On Saturday October 27 at 4PM- 6PM  Tools sharpening and Gratitude Berkeley Style.