Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Danielle Dunham, Student Work

"Because I Could Not Stop For Death" by Emily Dickinson

   Because I could not stop for Death
   He kindly stopped for me
   The Carriage held but just Ourselves
   And Immortality. We slowly drove – He knew no haste
   And I had put away
   My labor and my leisure too,
   For His Civility We passed the School, where Children strove
   At Recess – in the Ring – 
   We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain – 
   We passed the Setting Sun – Or rather – He passed us –
   The Dews drew quivering and chill –
   For only Gossamer, my Gown –
   My Tippet – only Tulle – We paused before a House that seemed
   A Swelling of the Ground –
   The Roof was scarcely visible –
   The Cornice – in the Ground – Since then – ‘tis Centuries – and yet
   Feels shorter than the Day
   I first surmised the Horses’ Heads 
   Were toward Eternity –

I was inspired by the acceptance of death and the idea of a welcoming figure, rather than a looming evil presence. The intent of the sculpture, garment and mask, is to personify death. To portray this kindly persona I chose to make a dapper figure, giving him a vest with a button up shirt and slacks. Rather than a cowl or a veil, I opted for a cow skull with an omega carved onto his forehead, symbolizing the last line of the poem. The colors are muted, except the flower in his vest lapel and the flowers upon his wilting crown. The poppy flowers are significant because they are symbolic of eternal rest.

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