As always, half the battle of making art is coming up with a new idea. This piece, filling in for Venus, was one of those challenges. Spending a few days in the studio looking at stones and going through all my art history books helped to conjure up this idea. I came across the painting by Sandro Botticelli, The Birth of Venus (1480) and I began thinking of the sea-goddess, Sedna, and how she has played such a huge role in Inuit history… and I decided to replace Venus with Sedna (but keeping the scallop shell).
Because I have been focusing on the addition of metals to my work in stone over the past number of months, I decided to make the scallop shell from brass, as I was looking for the thickness and the contrast. The brass as it was had a shine and a glare that I found a bit distracting to the piece as a whole, so I etched the surface to make it visually softer.
I arranged the Sedna so it appears as if she is just floating into place — not an aggressive move — but one of ease and comfort.