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Sculpture from hangers

Artist picks everyday object as his canvas

Created date

August 24th, 2010

When Jerry Winnick saw his young son s arm wrapped in a cast, he saw an opportunity for art. Winnick, who lives at Cedar Crest, an Erickson Living community in Pompton Plains, N.J., creates sculptures from plaster of paris, wrapped around wire clothes hangers and tinfoil. Winnick says anyone can create these sculptures in any size space, including their Cedar Crest apartment home. In fact, he recently demonstrated how to make the sculptures on Cedar Crest s in-house TV channel. Winnick makes shapes that range from houses to people to abstract figures. First, I make an illustration in my mind of what I want to create, he explains. Then he finds a block of wood for the base of his sculpture before he begins bending and shaping wire clothes hangers into a stick figure. Once he has his base shape, he wraps tinfoil around the wire as filler to thicken and form a more detailed sculpture. I squeeze it and shape it because it s pliable even more pliable than clay, he says. Next, he wraps the sculpture with plaster of paris and allows it to dry for two to three days. Finally, he spray paints the sculpture black (as a base coat). While it is still wet, he sprays silver, gold, or dark green paint to create a metallic effect. It looks like metal, yet it s gauze, he says in amazement of his own creation. Now, it s an art form.

From service to spray paint

While he was in the Navy-Marine Corps, Winnick s artistic talents began to bud. I would do a cartoon or calligraphy while I was in the service, he says. I always kept my hands in artwork. When he got out of the service, he attended New York University to become a commercial artist and learned graphic design and other artistic skills. Eventually, though, he took a job in the transportation industry, and art became a hobby. Now that he lives atCedar Crest, where his home maintenance, cooking, and other chores are taken care of, Winnick has time to pick up his artistic endeavors again. It s been a hobby that grew, he says.