"Fishing for Jormungand" is the first piece in my "Triptych Tiles" series wherein I attempt to capture a mythological story or concept within three, four-inch tiles.
This triptych captures the story of Thor as he fishes for the Midgard Serpent, Jormungand(r). Long before Captain Ahab set out to find Moby Dick, Thor was after something vastly larger, for the Midgard Serpent was so large it encircled all of Midgard and was a source of dread for the very Gods of Asgard themselves. With hammer held aloft, Thor waits for his nemisis to take the bait. When he does, Thor pulls on the line so hard that his feet break through the bottom of the boat and he is forced, reluctantly to give up the chase. Although this encounter proves inconclusive, the two are destined to meet once more in combat at the great, world-ending battle of Ragnarok, during which each will die at the hands of the other.
Strictly limited to 50 signed & numbered castings in each of three finishes (copper, brass and stone), each triptych comes beautifully mounted and framed, accompanied by a signed "story card" that tells the tale upon which the art is based.
I use a high-quality black, beaded frame without glazing (glass). I find this brings out the true depth of the sculpt and eliminates the glare often associated with traditional framing. Depending on where it is displayed, the piece may require dusting from time to time. Although dry-dusting is always preferred, the backing I use has a special coating that will allow it to be dusted with a damp cloth if needed.
I sculpt the original in various materials - but chiefly in Casteline (a wax-clay) over a wood frame. I then mold the original and then produce a limited number of castings using the cold-cast technique. That is to say, I take ground metal, stone, wood fiber or other materials and mix it with an art-grade resin to create light-weight sculptures that have all the beauty of natural materials.
Digging a little deeper into the story of Thor and Jormungand...
Those familiar with the story will note two omissions in my piece. Both resulted in an effort to focus on the essence of the story while simplifying the image. While interesting in their own right, these two details only have served to muddy the central archetypal story at play - namely that of Thor's determination to catch his enemy and thereby change his fate and that of all nine worlds. The two omissions are:
1) Thor was, on this particular occasion, accompanied by a giant named Hymir. Thor had sought the hospitality of this giant and, when told he could find his dinner among his host's cattle, Thor (who's hunger and thirst were both without measure) proceeded to eat all of the giant's cattle. This quite understandably upset the giant who insisted Thor find dinner for him in return. Thor agreed to this and they set off together in a small fishing boat, catching whales for the giant to eat. It came to pass that the giant said he was satisfied by the food Thor has secured and thought it best that they turn around since Jormungandr was known to dwell in the particular part of the sea where they now found themselves. This was all Thor needed to hear and, the bellowing objections of the giant notwithstanding, Thor was determined to fish out this largest of Loki's children from the waters. I eliminated Hymir from the piece simply because I wanted to keep the focus on Thor.
2) Another detail I omitted is the head of the cattle Thor used as bait at the end of the hook. Here too, I made the decision to eliminate this detail to keep the design clean and the focus on Thor and Jormungandr. The hook proved a quicker read and takes nothing of importance away from the story.
Sculpture by Aric Jorn
Photography by Donna Kert
©2015-2020 held by Aric Jorn and Aric Jorn Studios LLC. All rights reserved.
Fishing for Jormungand
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