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Joseph
Wheelwright
Year created: 
1995
Listening Stone, Joseph Wheelwright

Joseph Wheelwright. Listening Stone. 1995. Granite. 40" x 44" x 60"

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40" x 44" x 60"

Granite
deCordova Permanent Collection 1995.27, Museum Purchase with partial funding provided by Betty Jane and Stephen Andrus

Joseph Wheelwright is a master carver who works in stone, wood, and bone to create fantastic figures and creatures. These mysterious presences exist in a range of scales from the tiny to the monumental, and often reference the natural world through the artist's choice of materials and particular anatomical distortions. Listening Stone was created especially for the deCordova Sculpture Park. Wheelwright chose a giant boulder from a recent excavation on the grounds, and transformed it into a disembodied abstracted head at his studio. After completing the work, the sculpture was positioned so as relate in site, size, and materials to nearby rock outcroppings. In this way, Listening Stone seems to have emerged spontaneously from the ground, suggesting a mythic being or nature spirit in communion with the earth.