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Taurus and the Scythe

Fenn Martin

In an unexpected move Taurus of clay has formed a partnership with the cosmic farmer. Follow the cosmic ghetto scythers as they execute the dance of the scythe; reaping along city fencelines, through parking lots, lush forests and wastelands alike.  Constantly gathering fare for Taurus, new companion and lover and watch the new child emerge!

In this time-based project with clay artist Fenn Martin will explore ideas of animal husbandry though the act of harvesting feed for an imagined domesticated animal –the cow. Traditionally the family cow was a staple to every rural family and referred to affectionately as “the wet nurse of humanity”. The cow was a life-line of food provision possibilities and in turn the farmer was responsible to provide reasonable accommodations and ample feed. Through a time-honoured tradition of scything –the act of collecting grains and feed through hand labour- My cow and I explores an imagined modern-day relationship between man and bovine.


For this project a life sized cow was built on a wooden armature and covered entirely with green clay. Leading up to the night-time performance, with the assistance of a small crew of interested participants the sculpture will come to life with exaggerated and abstracted textures. The impressive sheer mass of 2000lbs of clay will provide a silhouette into a past landscape in an unlikely new location.  The softness of clay will capture the touch of audience people inclined to participate as they are invited to modify or leave their mark on the piece through the duration of the project.


In conjunction with this clay work there will be a performative aspect whereby the artist wonders the nearby area acting out the repetitive and graceful motion of scything. This scythe has a modern twist it is bladeless and is custom outfitted with a neon strips of light to be easily viewed at night. This curious mix of technology will amplify and make visible the slow rhythmic zigzag motion.  The repetitive act of this hand labour evokes a meditative query on the act of “harvest”, our relationships to the land and to animal. Outfitted with a assortment of lighting and a mask made from a cow hipbone, the team of scythers will move around in silence deeply focused on this imagined task of reaping though the night.


The sculpture moved to many locations through parking lots and grassy areas.  Lumiere, Art in the Open and Antigonight 2016.

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