Sunday, July 3, 2016

"This was no boat accident!"

You might recognize that famous line fine from the movie Jaws. Well, this will not be a story about great white sharks in Michigan (there aren’t any) if that’s what you are thinking. Each summer, my father, a college professor, would load up my mom, older sister, younger brother and me, and we would go on a summer-long adventure. In 1975, the year Jaws came out, we were on the east coast, first in Lewes, DE, and then in Cape Hatteras, NC. In Lewes I spend countless hours riding a bike that belonged to the lodge where we stayed; there was no TV and not much else to do. It was in Lewes, in a tiny old movie theater, that I first saw Jaws. It made a big impact on me; I was both terrified and fascinated.

After Lewes, our next stop was Cape Hatteras, which is on the open ocean. There I spent countless hours walking up and down the beach and swimming in the surf. One day, a pod of dolphins were spotted swimming north just off shore. Of course everyone thought they were great white sharks and quickly got out of the water! We waited there trembling until someone produced a correct identification. That must have happened everywhere that summer – but not in Michigan.

My great white shark, the “g” for the 2016 Felix Kulpa show is reminiscent of that famous star of Jaws – literally since they used a mechanical model instead of a real shark. The materials I used also convey “the great white sharkness of a great white shark.”

The skin is composed of a variety of grey metals:
·          ·     Protective aluminum cover of a missle’s nose cone (nose)
       ·      A old stainless steel fire extinguisher (body)
       ·      Extra large galvanized steel gate hinges and scrap steel (fins)

As well as:
·    Old bone buttons (sewn on for eyes)
·    Handcrafted and sharpened dowels (teeth) in a red mouth
Built like a torpedo or a giant submarine, with vacant eyes and a red ripping mouth, my great white shark is “no boat accident!” either.

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