Lunar Etching

Lunar Etching

Three large iron bowls sit at the corners of a perfect triangle 2 meters apart. The meter-wide bowls are situated upon natural granite boulders streaked with oxidation; perfectly placed and balanced at different heights. Their placement speaks to a connection, a link between the sky, the earth, and us.

Each bowl is designed to catch and hold water – our link from the celestial to the earth. They will be thicker at the base than the rim to better balance on their granite perches. The seemingly natural stone formations elevate the bowls to better catch rainwater and heighten the grounded, heavy feeling of the installation.

One bowl’s rim is etched with shallow grooves where water will escape from an overflow first. Over time, the small rivulets that flow down the outside of the bowl will create red-orange streaks that will stain the granite below. This represents the full moon (which occurs on June 20, 2014, the day of project completion). The second bowl has small slits partway up the walls of the bowl. Again, the escaping water will create stripes over time where the iron is not sealed. This represents the 58% full moon (which occurs on May 15, 2014, our projected day of arrival). The third bowl drains directly out the bottom. This represents the new moon (which occurs the day of our projected departure from Latvia).

Water is our symbolic and literal connection between the celestial (moon reflected in iron), earth (granite projecting from the ground), and us (artist, viewer, created space). Water falls into the bowls and drains in red-orange lines down the outside of the iron, staining the granite back to the earth. This sculpture highlights our connection to place through the  primal elements. It also reflects the change that occurs in a landscape with the passage of time; creating a space to view change, age, and growth firsthand.

1. Lunar Etching Proposal

Elizabeth Helfer 


Ben Foley