Alternative Art Surfaces: Stones Assemblage

(This tutorial was previously published in the book Alternative Art Surfaces: Mixed Media Techniques for Painting on More Than 35 Different Surfaces by Darlene Olivia McElroy and Sandra Duran Wilson, copyright 2014; republished here courtesy of createmixedmedia.com.)

Think outside the box—or stone—if you will. Stone has been used for carving and drawing, and it’s even ground to make pigments for paint. The pursuit of precious stones has launched many an adventure, and cave paintings from ancient and prehistoric times continue to inspire us.

What I want to talk about now is using stone itself, without any alteration, as an art form or element. The humble gabion, which is used to harness rocks and form barriers to prevent erosion, is experiencing a newly elevated status in the worlds of architecture, sculpture and landscape. In this project, you will form a miniature gabion to hold small stones to a wood panel.

Final_600

Out of the Nest
Sandra Duran Wilson
(In the finished piece at right, I painted the panel first and then attached the gabion. I then used epoxy to attach additional stones to the painted panel.)

Materials

  • coated wire
  • wire cutters
  • pliers
  • wire mesh
  • drill
  • stones and marbles
  • pencil
  • pre-painted surface

Tips, Troubleshooting and More Ideas

  • When working on natural stone that has not been polished, wash and dry it to remove any dirt.
  • Satin and matte paints blend better with the stone, but use whatever finish necessary to achieve your desired results.

step 1a

step 1b

step 1c

1. Cut out the metal for the gabion and use pliers to bend the metal into shape. (3 images above)

step 2a

step 2b

step 2c

2. Continue to shape and form the gabion. Trim any excess metal and sharp edges with wire cutters. Stitch the
gabion closed by wrapping with wire. I am using a coated wire for hanging art for my stitching. (above 3 images)

step 3

3. Place the gabion on your surface and mark holes for drilling.

step 4

4. Drill holes to be used to secure the gabion into the surface.

step 5

5.  Attach the gabion to the surface with wire.

step 6

6. Secure the wire on the back of the surface.

step 7

7. Fill the gabion with stones. When finished, bend the top edge of the wire to close the gabion, and stitch the gabion closed with wire.

(This tutorial was previously published in the book Alternative Art Surfaces: Mixed Media Techniques for Painting on More Than 35 Different Surfaces by Darlene Olivia McElroy and Sandra Duran Wilson, copyright 2014; republished here courtesy of createmixedmedia.com.)

U3039_Alternative_Art_Surfaces_CM.inddTo learn more about or purchase a copy of Alternative Art Surfaces by Darlene Olivia McElroy and Sandra Duran Wilson, click here.

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