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Sculpture in plaster by Toni Novello
2007 D. Bradley Smith Art Purchase Award Winner

Photo of the Artwork

Photo of the Artist This fascinating sculpture began with an assignment to abstract a human figure in Toni's Sculpture I class at BHS this spring. Toni developed her design through the prescribed steps -- a sketch, then a clay model at reduced scale, then a cardboard-and-duct-tape skeleton, then the finished piece -- and with each step the design evolved significantly.

The finished form was produced by layering plaster strips on the cardboard skeleton, then refining the contours with drywall compound. "LOTS of drywall compound!" Toni admitted. The final step -- painting -- gave Toni a chance to do what she loves most, and the unusual color blending and the painted swirls are characteristic of her favorite works.

With each step, her teacher Jed Kunz would ask her, "Toni... do you have a plan?" "No," she would answer, "not really." But Jed knew from his experience with Toni in his Studio Art class that he could trust her instincts, and as you can see, the results justify that trust.

The piece is carefully crafted to be interesting from any vantage point. Toni even gives the viewer permission to set the piece on any side he or she likes!

Toni took both Sculpture I and Studio Art in her senior year at BHS. While Ceramics, taken as a freshman, was her only other art experience at the high school, Toni is always busy with creative projects at home. Jed Kunz calls her "energetic and focused," and those traits shine through whether she's painting at home, snowboarding at Bristol, or working in the sculpture studio.

For Toni, her experience in Sculpture I sets the stage for her study of Interior Design at Mercyhurst College, which will challenge her to continue her journey from the two-dimensional canvas to the three-dimensional world.

photo provided by Jed Kunz
story by Jim Kane

June 5, 2007

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