The Italian word rontondo (round) coined the term tondo and was used during the Renaissance for religious and mythological imagery. The circular shape has challenged sculptors and painters since Greek antiquity.
I have been influenced by classical sculpture since my student years
at the Kansas City Art Institute and the time-honored tondo seemed
like the perfect format for my new creation – “Flightless Tondo”.
The inspiration for the bas relief was provoked by the discovery of
During the Covid-19 virus shut down I find myself studio bound and
incarcerated like never before. I'm taking advantage of this time
by revisiting startups and works that were set aside for one reason or
another in years past and among the many is a head study of one of the
most interesting birds I have ever encountered afield:
The Secretary Bird.
10"H 10"W 6"D
Edition Size 50
This head study is a nightmare for a mold maker and foundry to cast.
We spent many hours consulting the foundry and relying
on their assistance in the production process.
This study is the result of an unforgettable trip to Tanzania several years ago with a group of artist friends: Jan Martin McGuire, James Gary Hines, John Agnew, Julie Askew, Robert Caldwell, Paul Dixon, Tony Pridham, and Dale Weiler. Trish and I were given our own guide and Land Rover, spent time consuming hours at water holes in search of closeups and details of various species and returned home with over 15,000 digital images. The Secretary Bird is famous for its long black head plumes, is a raptor closely related to the osprey and can be found stomping snakes in sub-Saharan African grasslands. Please type in Secretary Bird in the white blog search box for more info on this subject.