Cooking the stones
Maenzanise picks up the Baboon Climbing the Mountain from a pile of as yet unfinished pieces and studies it again. With a fine chisel he expertly adds detail then smoothes the baboon's long square nose with a rasp. It still appears a mottled pale grey but as he dips it in water and sands it down, its hidden dark colours and metallic flecks appear immediately. Sanded again and again, the sculpture is then placed near the fire to gain heat for 10-15 minutes.
Some stones may be treated like bread where a little longer in the oven won't harm, others must be handled like a soufflé which may go pop if left for a minute too long. The warm sculpture is then iced like a cake with floor or shoe polish and buffed to a high gloss bringing out its natural colours and covering it with protective layer.
A lady hovering around Maenzanise's sculptures finally stated, 'I have decided to take that beautiful green Impala.' Maenzanise replied 'No Madam,' his pause for breath causing her great anxiety, 'it is a female Kudu not an Impala,' her relief was evident.
'Look she is scratching with her hind leg, but her big ears are always listening for danger. She would be happy on your veranda, or your garden is fine too.' And so another sculpture finds its home and upon its empty pedestal is placed a dark shiny piece shaped like a baboon on a mountain.
The author of this article is Carrie Hampton - she can be contacted on email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Copyright © 2002 Carrie Hampton. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the permission of the author is prohibited.