Sculpture by Ross Matteson


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Perfect on Petra

ã1999 by Ross Matteson   67x 20 x 18 inches   edition size 20   Sold Out Edition

Perfect on Petra explores heart-felt qualities.   Included are the ideas of alertness, poise, protection, and home.   Once again, in this sculpture I have used my primary visual metaphor – the falcon.

The monumental stance of this falcon becomes almost at one with its bronze support form.    My trained gyrfalcon "Maquette" provided the close reference I needed to capture this intimate and positive pose.   Gyrfalcons are able to cover their talons with long low belly feathers.   This protects their feet from the cold. In this somewhat abstract looking part of the sculpture, I ended up using a very dense material to describe a very soft, low-density feather outline.

Wonderfully, the creating of Perfect on Petra coincided with a very special experience that is at least partially recognized in the title. This experience was the healing of a tumor drastically affecting my left eye.    I have always been blessed with exceptional vision.   I have a great motivation to more thoroughly understand the basis of my non-medical healing that allowed me to finish this sculpture and to be free from a frightening problem.

Petra, or rock, is a biblical reference for foundation or church.   A spiritual perspective for my title might be "healthy on a foundation of absolute truth."   The naturalist's take on the title could probably read something more like "nice falcon perched on a rock!"    And the default explanation can always be "guard falcon, calm, capable and strong!"   Fortunately, fine art requires no simple narrative.    I understand that an artist's visual and tactile languages are experienced very individually.

Perfect on Petra is in the collection of the National Museum of Wildlife Art, Jackson, WY.

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[photo credit: Ross Matteson]