Archer’s Pavilion – Part 2

Sean Adcock has been showing “Stone Rising” to groups of stone enthusiasts in the UK. He tells me that of all the work featured in the video, Archer Pavilion elicits the strongest reaction. I’ve been reading “Stones of Rimini” by Adrian Stokes. He writes, “Poets possess the insight with which to re-create subjectively the unconscious fantasies that are general.” His words are the perfect summation of why works of art fascinate.

To continue with Sean’s questions about the making of Archer’s Pavilion I’d like to explore its inspiration for a moment. Looking back, I remember being shown a list of stone walling words and terms compiled by Nick Aitkin, a Scottish waller friend. The word “knapper” was defined as a person assigned to break large stone into small for rural road building. When I looked further into the term I found it also applied to someone who shaped arrowheads from flint. That got me looking at the history of arrows and medieval warfare. Archers on a campaign would bivouac for the night in canvas tents with conical roofs. Thousands of them would be set up on an open plain. It was words that led me to imagine what a stone tent would look like standing in a field.

To review what constituted the “technical bits” that went into the making of Archers Pavilion I must conjure up my old dump truck. The frame of the dump bed was made of box steel channel. For the inventive mind, that meant I had a vise for cold bending 5/8” reinforcing rod on site. I fashioned a 20’ length of steel into the profile I wished the pavilion to take and then copied it six times, bending each profile to match the first. Those I wired to two circles of steel rod that defined the bottom and top rims of what was to be the tent side-walls. With the seven profile rods meeting at the middle top I had the outline of the exterior of the shape I wanted to make. The inside shape, or hollow, was defined by pieces of string pulled from near the top, to a 5’ diameter circle on the ground, forming a conical interior space when the piece was completed.

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5 Responses to Archer’s Pavilion – Part 2

  1. Denise March 27, 2010 at 4:51 am #

    Dan, Thank you for looking at my site. Denise Labadie

  2. Dan March 25, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    Denise, your fiber art looks amazing, thanks for sending along the link.

  3. Denise March 23, 2010 at 2:38 am #

    Dear Dan, I am thoroughly loving “Listening to Stone”, and “In Company of Stone”. I love the stones of Ireland. I replicate the ancient stone structures, or ruins, one stone at a time, but my “stones” are made from fabric.- – I can’t tell you how thrilling it is to hear you talk about listening to the stones to create your art. Thank you!!

  4. Dan Snow February 6, 2010 at 3:54 pm #

    Hi Dean,
    Thanks for following the posts.
    Regarding your questions-
    The interior has an upside-down batter, leaning from the floor toward the ceiling’s center point. The rod guides on the exterior, and the string guides on the interior, made following the circles pretty easy.
    I don’t think there were any through stones, at least not in any planned pattern of installment. There may have been a couple randomly placed ones.

  5. Dean McLellan February 5, 2010 at 10:36 pm #

    Those are some very interesting pictures of the process there. Great to see how the structure came to be, both in thought and in fact. I have to ask, is the inside of the structure built vertically or with a batter? Was it tricky getting the circle shape with the stones, and were through stones employed at all?

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