Celebrated polymer clay artist, Jon Stuart Anderson is perhaps ahead of his time in the art of creating polymer clay sculptures. At 46 years of age, Jon is fast one of the most collectible artists of the Southwest. An exceptional combination of artist, botanist, mathematician, zoologist and engineer, Jon is inspired by the wonders of nature as well as the ancient cultures of the world and their art.
In creating his sculptures, Jon uses his mathematically fine tuned engineering skills and ingenuity to produce pieces extremely intricate. He created many of his own colors of clay and has invented many processes that have never been done before with this type of clay. He has been refining these amazing sculptures for over a decade and continues to create new and beautiful images - and new animals every year - by his own hand, in his studio hidden deep in the paradise of Bali.
Polymer clay has been around for at least 30 years, and has been known to doll makers and miniaturists for many of those years. It is a relatively new material to artists in other media. This new clay is plastic in the best sense of the word and will do most things that traditional materials like ceramic, wood and glass will do. It can be found under brand names such as "Fimo".
It is a plastic called polyvinyl chloride, hence the name polymer clay because it is made up of vinyl chloride in suspension. It is soft and moldable at room temperature and is hardened and fused into permanent plastic with heat. The polymer clay is kneaded then formed into one of three basic shapes: the ball, the log, and the sheet. All other processes are based upon elaborations of those shapes, and from this most other patterns can be made.
The work most seen is based on the ancient glass technique of caning. It refers to a glass rod or cylinder that has a pattern running throughout the length. Through this glass working technique called Millefori or a "thousand flowers," canes are produced in a large diameter and then stretched down into small diameter rods - called "reduction." With this technique patterns can be built up, the borders between colors remain distinct, and the cane can be cut and reassembled to create composite patterns. The clay is then applied like mosaic tiles to the animal's form. Each and every stage of this arduous process is done completely by hand. But the most important aspect to remember is this: No paint is used whatsoever in the process as each color is an individual colored piece of polymer clay! Amazing no ?!!
Jon Stuart Anderson working process of creating FIMO polymer clay art.
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