- "I have always used the floating fish to symbolize the presence of life's magic," says James Christensen. "Occasionally, I've wondered whether these little guys are bringing the magic with them or are the result of it. Who is the recipient of the benediction. Is the angel blessing the fish, or in another way, is the fish blessing the angelblessing her by its presence. The Latin on the ring, Beatus Est Pisciculus, says Blessed is the little Fish. Regardless of which came first, the angle or the fish, its important to stop and take the time to be thankful for the magic in our lives."The Art of Bronze MakingFrom concept to completion, it takes several months to create a bronze edition.Each sculpture is individually hand made using traditional methods:' Working from original drawings, James C. Christensen and master craftsmen model the sculpture in clay segments.' A silicone mold is prepared for wax casting and melted wax is poured into the mold.' The wax casting is dipped in slurry, a silica compound.' The slurry shell is heated and the liquid wax burns out leaving a rigid, heat-resistant master mold. Molten bronze is then poured into this mold.' After cooling, the bronze is carefully removed and the segments are soldered together.' The bronze is hand-sanded and polished and a variety of patinas give subtle colorations to the finished work of art.
- The Artist
Inspired by the world's myths, fables and tales of imagination, James C. Christensen wants his work to add up to more than a beautiful - if sometimes "curious" looking work of art. Having taught art professionally for over 20 years, he likes to think of the world as his classroom. His hope is that through whatever he creates - be it a porcelain, fine art print or book - he can convey a message, inspiration or a simple laugh. He believes that teaching people to use their imagination helps us find solutions to sooth the stresses of everyday life - or get a little lift to help us keep going. In short - all things are possible when you share Christensen's philosophy that "Believing is Seeing."
Christensen was born in 1942 and raised in Culver City, California. He studied painting at Brigham Young University and, for a while, the University of California at Los Angeles before finishing his formal education at BYU. Since then, he has had one-man shows in the West and the Northeast and his work is prized in collections throughout the U.S. and Europe.
The artist has been commissioned by both Time/Life Books and Omni to create illustrations for their publications and his work has appeared in the prestigious American Illustration Annual and Japan's Outstanding American Illustrators. Christensen has also won all the professional art honors the World Science Fiction Convention can bestow, as well as multiple Chesley Awards from the Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists.
Christensen's fine art now appears as works of art in porcelain, artist-inspired products such as note cards, silk ties and several books - A Journey of the Imagination (1994), the adventure fantasy Voyage of the Basset-adapted for television by Hallmark's Odyssey Channel as the Voyage of the Unicorn, Rhymes and Reasons (1997), Parables (written by Robert Millet, 1999), The Personal Illumination Series and The Personal Illumination Journal (2000), a series of interactive journals and A Shakespeare Sketchbook (2001).
"Life seems to be more complicated than ever. And, all too often, too serious. I use my artwork to ease the burden of everyday stuff. My characters deal with the same problems we all face in what we call 'life.' Their unique point of view helps me put my own problems in perspective with a smile - and hopefully yours. We are all on this journey together and anything we can do to help each other is a good thing." - James Christensen