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The Secret Society of the Heber Mud Hens Playing Poker

   by Linda Eddy and Ginny Lenoir, Deborah Shimek, Bess Johnson for Re-Invent a Work of Art (2013)

Inspiration Piece: Dogs Playing Poker

Inspiration Artist: Cassius Marcellus Coolidge

OMG! We got a box full of junk and not a clue what to do with it. So...it sat around for a couple of months until inspiration hit us. We concluded that we "mud hens", our name for our group of friends who came together in an interest to learn ceramics, were not much different than the dogs who were playing poker. Just a group out having a good time! So we incorporated ourselves into a work of are that has always brought a smile to our faces. Hence out project and a long and laugh filled journey.

The tools, materials and techniques used were:

Blocks of wood for the bases of the crates, with the slats of wood being used for the table top, clock and cards. We also used some of the wooden dowels in the grandfather clock. The large stretched canvas was used for the back drop.

Canvas was used for the small painting (self portrait) on the wall and the table top. The large stretched canvas was used for the back drop.

Newsprint for packing was used for the rooster tail and the "nests".

Rope was also incorporated in to the rooster tail and around the table.

Friendly plastic pellets were used for the earrings, one necklace and the pendulum bob on the grandfather clock.

The instructional brochure was used, because of its excellent frame on the cover, to frame our art work.

Wire was used to make the chain for the light, armatures, "L' brackets to support the back panel and the hanging light, chicken legs, and rooster feathers ( he really could not be enhanced enough- knowing roosters).

Sculpey and chavant clays were used for sculpting the chicken heads and forms as well as the poker chips, wine glasses, the "Chico Vino" wine bottle and the "Bug Lite" beer can, lamp, slats on crates, table base, one necklace, shoes and other accessories.

Tools used in addition to the ones mentioned above were wire cutters, and pliers, acrylic paints and red glitter finger nail polish (used on the shoes of on of the hens, the "finger tips of the hen with the red hat, and the end of the glowing cigar), a very dysfunctional band saw and an even worse dremel saw, an electric sander and lots and lots of sand paper, numerous clay tools, knifes, paint brushes, tweezers, toothpicks, straws and a lot of hot air to blow the poker chips out the end, and many, many bottles of wine.

The Secret Society of the Heber Mud Hens ( the toadstool division) is a small group of women that
have discovered a common love and talent for creating art. We began exploring different types of media beginning with clay and have graduated to multiple medias.

The are work that we chose comes from a series of paintings commissioned by Brown and Bigelow in 1903 to advertise their cigar manufacturing. Cassius Coolidge did a total of nine different versions of "dogs playing poker", hence the rooster and his cigar in with all we mud hens. Even today you will see this are work reproduced in many commercial venues.

The Secret Society of the Heber Mud Hens ( the toadstool division) is a small group of women that
have discovered a common love and talent for creating art. We began exploring different types of media beginning with clay and have graduated to multiple medias.

The are work that we chose comes from a series of paintings commissioned by Brown and Bigelow in 1903 to advertise their cigar manufacturing. Cassius Coolidge did a total of nine different versions of "dogs playing poker", hence the rooster and his cigar in with all we mud hens. Even today you will see this are work reproduced in many commercial venues.

 


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