TIRE THURSDAYS AND FRIDAYS
In order to get ready for some big shows coming up, which I need to describe SOON!, I have set aside Tire Thursdays to work on Reptire Art. At the pace I am going, it looks I'll need to make the Tire Fridays as well. But that means a lot more other work the other days.
This past Thursday, I got to work on a special project, though indeed it was not preparing for the events I should be preparing for, but instead, an event that comes around every year that I like to participate in, and would like to bring more of my tire art into.
That is the Haw River Festival, which my mother and sister have been involved with for many years, and for which I have been getting more involved with since I've moved out this way, and have been painting faces at for the past 2 years, and plan to again this year.
HAW TIRE VISITATION
But here was a special oppurtunity. My girl down at the Haw River Assembaly, Lady Germane James recently gave me a yoohoo that at recent clean up, which I had missed, they had recovered several tires that I might be interested. I recently approached Germane about a project I have in mind to convert some Haw River tires into planters, as a fundraiser for them. So we thought this 'harvest could be a good dry run.
So the other day, I swung by the old Bynum Bridge, where Lady J had informed me they were waiting, en route to the dump, and packed a few choice blubbery lugs into the back seat, and took them home to meet the parents.
MR. AND MRS.
So, of these that I harvested were two good old biased tires, still on the rim, which should be perfect for some 'Haw River Petina Planters', and two biased Truck tires off the rim, oldies but goodies, though each in pretty rough shape. (The bigger of the two actually had its side walls cut out, strange, I wonder why..(fortunately, they hadn't butchered him too bad..)
I decided to start with the smaller of the two, to tie her into a treadknot. Once I had removed her battered side walls, I discovered that the tread width to circumfrence ratio was not quite what it needed to be. So I had make a change in plans, and narrow her width.
The solution I chose was to actually remove one edge of her tread. And to do this, I followed the jagged line of her tread (She is actually an old trailer tire! which I had never yet encountered). This edge treatment a) would help her to become a planter, as one side would then be open, creating the top, and the other closed, creating the bottom. b) additionally, cutting along this jagged line would create a rhythm along that line, that I thought would be interesting....so I went for it, this was to be an experiment.
Along the way, I discovered a few suprises... a the two plies of the tire had seperated in several places, something that I had never encountered before. I don't know what caused this, was it a defect in the tire, or just age, or both? I wonder. So that was strange enough..
But then, I discovered that this dirty old tire, bore another blessing within--- it seemed that, while sitting on what ever river bank it was on, a colony of small black ants had decided this thing was their Super Dome / Omni Plex, and had built their kingdom right between these two seperated plies, which I discovered when they began to pour out of a hole in the tread's face.....in a rage.
Of the various tires I have tied into knots, I could tell that this was to be a unique tying experience...
Well, I'm sorry to say that this was sort of a massacre. I did not mean for it to be, but in the course of me rotating the tire around on the table, and they pouring out onto the surface of the tire, to defend it, many many of them were slain. I only got one bite on the elbow, from a very brave little ant, thank mostly to the cow her gave her hide to make my gloves...
But when it was all said and done, I think the knot came out looking very nice. I think that the scalloped edge gives it a little bit of an ...alligatory feel...what do you think? I think that I would like to plant her with either a spider plant, or even better, some kind of Agave, maybe an Aloe plant...
So this was a pretty satisfying operation. I actually really like the dirty look on her face, it is part of her; her Haw River Patina. So I think that I will leave that on, as part of the sclupture. I think I might call her Agave Knectar Knot. It would be nice to find a way to some how honor the slain ants, that once made her their kingdom, and perhaps still do....Perhaps she will make a good addition/donation to the Haw River Live Auction, which our friend the Revered Gary Phillips will be spinning, a marvel to see in action. An Actioneer.
So next on my list was Big Daddy, or Hercules, as he called himself...
This was one thick tire. I cleaned his edges with my knife, and his flanks (sidewalls) were about an inch deep!
I quickly surmised that he was going to give the same ratio treatment as the last one, and require a similar approach. As I had liked the way the edges looked on the little lady I had warmed up with,
I decided to take a similar approach to this one, and made the bold move to split him straight down the middle, along the jaggedy line stretching down his back, or tread.
I have attempted a similar treatment of much smaller motorcycle tires, but I really had never tried anything of this size. Even the motor cycle tire I had recently tried had giver me a world of trouble.
But some how, I felt like I had the upper hand on this beast.....perhaps because I had just warmed up with the other.
This was kind of grueling, and I only got a third of the way through, becuase trying to tear and hack through that thick tread rubber was really wearing on my writsts, and they are an asset that I need to protect.
But the result I found very interesting, and worth repeating some day.
Visually, the 'cracked' tire had its own appeal, and I got some good 'Andrew Goldsworthy-worthy' shots'
OK, maybe not worthy, pretty fricken cool for a tire, right?
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