Richard Edelman

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TOTEM POLE

Private Collection, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

2009

Richard Edelman

10' x 5' x 3'

Painted Steel

My client wanted a totem pole, a rigid form which held little interest for me. However, over the years I'd collected hundreds of wooden foundry patterns, which are relics of the age of cast iron machinery.  I built the totem pole from these wooden patterns, then caulked and painted. The wood immediately began to peel its paint. I was left with no choice but to grant these objects their ancient destiny by molding and casting them in aluminum, which was then finished with industrial electrostatic paints.