The Mask

In the winter of early 2020, during the COVID lockdown, being allowed 1 hour out per day, I combed the local woodlands near Saint Chaffrey. I found an odd piece of wood on what I believe was a decomposed Elm tree. There was lots of rotten wood below the bark layers, but the remaining wood, after cleaning, was very solid and a quite thin shell (all under 10mm thick).

It was only after cleaning and initial lacquering that I saw the fantastic Mask that unbeknown to me was there! It must have been the COVID plague and a radio program talking about previous plagues that made me think of the Plague Doctors' masks.

The only adaptation was the addition of a handle and the sandstone mount.

Materials: Elm Wood, lacquer, Mountain Ash (handle), Sandstone (base)

Dimensions: 1000m x 1000mm x 300mm

Completion: 5/2020

Copper engraving of Doctor Schnabel (i.e., Dr. Beak), a plague doctor in seventeenth-century Rome, circa 1656 (Wikipedia: Plague doctor)