Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Short Takes from Lanesville 2

Since I've been side-tracked with artsy posts and commentary about sculpture this should be a good time for this Lanesville story. Having left the area in 1984, I may not have heard the news. Although, I would think that if it made the newspaper that some of my old friends and neighbors would have sent me a copy.

Once we had the house livable, we decided to spend a bit of time rebuilding the garage. Wisteria had eaten the majority of the original structure and though it was still standing it had no roof and three of the four walls were worthless. (If you look at the first picture, below, you can get an idea of the extent to which the wisteria had taken over. Doc is standing just to the right of the back corner of the old garage! This was taken AFTER we had pulled the vines off the garage.) Doc wanted a "studio" to work on his sculpture, so we salvaged one wall and the doors so that we could rebuild on the same spot and call it a renovation rather than new construction. These pictures show the before and the almost after. We did add on to the side with the windows about a year later.

So Doc got his workspace and he created some really nifty pieces here...wish I still had a few of them!

At one point, the DeCordova Museum had an exhibit featuring the faculty from the Massachusetts College of Art for which Doc designed an installation piece. It was a graveyard. He sculpted over a dozen headstones from hydrocal. Each headstone was identical in white "marble" with the entwined hands symbol. The only difference one to the next was the "numbering". Each stone had a different two-digit number. As I recall they were consecutive numbers. The piece spent a month at the DeCordova and then the pastor from our church in Lanesville asked if we could "install" the graveyard on the front lawn of the church for Easter week. THAT made the front page of the Gloucester Times!

That was the last time the graveyard appeared in public. I think. And that brings me to our move to Florida during the early summer of 1984.

What does one do with that many headstones weighing, oh...maybe 75 pounds each, when you want to move 1500 miles? Well, if you're on a budget you don't pay to move them.

(enormous grin)

You bury them in the back yard.

And wonder what will happen, years later, if.........

Someone inadvertently digs them up.


mary said...

Do you have pics of them while at DeCordova? How far down do you think you dug? Wouldn;t it be fun to go and try to find one? You'd freak the flower lady out!

Thanks and keep the stories coming - I just love them,

deb said...

No, no pics. I used to have the GDT photo, but I think I tossed it during the massive clean out before moving back to MA.

As I recall, they are buried individually and flat about a foot under.

I wonder if in all the bulb planting she hasn't found any.

There is also a real headstone buried there. Doc confiscated it from a student who was going to use it for carving. It belonged to an infant.

dickiebo said...

I can just see it now. One day, the Politzei are gonna be coming, a-knockin' at your door! Blimey, it's little wonder that you are 'known' to the local fuzz.
I assume that you buried them before the advent of e-bay?

deb said...

"Known" to the cops? Really, dickiebo! Only because I give them DD gift cards and scrap paper! I do think it would be great fun to have the mystery unfold and be the one to "solve" it.

As for ebay....not a home computer in sight for years. Most folks had just got cable tv and we were still debating over VHS or Beta. Ahhh, the days of vinyl records and 8 track tapes.