Athena and the Owl

There’s a local business called Bears Mill that had its autumn open house this weekend, and so we and some friends went. Among the things there: a small art show by an Ohio artist named Gary Hovey, who makes sculpture out of flatware. One of the sculptures was an owl; naturally we had to pose Athena in front of it. Here’s another picture of the sculpture (sans daughter) and a gallery of the artist’s other work. He must go through a lot of spoons in a year.

How was your weekend?

25 Comments on “Athena and the Owl”

  1. My weekend was hot…

    29C (~85F), hottest day of the year around here (SE UK) Let’s just say, damn unusual for this time of the year.

  2. Aw, I loved going to Bears Mill as a kid. And Athena looks perfect with her owl. But I want to know about that painting in the background!

    My weekend has mainly consisted of cat-waxing, of which this is some.

  3. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me
    Chang of Space Command

    Seriously cool sculpture, man!

    My weekend was awesome! Friday my wife taught one of the best yoga classes ever and I DJ’d my best set ever. Saturday I chillzed to the max playing Fallout Sierra Madre then we had dinner with some friends who recently adopted the cutest little guy ever named Jackson. Today I spent the better part of with my wife as the child was off at a sleepover. And I have spent the afternoon writing and playing more Fallout.

    Possibly one of those weekends I wish I could bottle up and sip on at leisure later.

  4. Just out of curiosity (and not to offend or stir up trouble) was permission granted for the photo? I’ve been asked by artists not to take photographs of their work. I know not all artists are particular about this particular issue. But… I was at an art festival recently and one artist – a photographer – had a sign asking people not to take photos of his photos. He also had signs with the image of a camera with a red circle and line through the camera. I found this interesting. It was at the same festival I was asked not to photograph (another) artist’s work.

  5. The artist wasn’t there, there was no sign asking not to photograph and no one stopped me from taking the photo.

  6. N.K. Jemisin: Athena’s name, and the source thereof, is probably what Mr. Scalzi had in mind when he posed her by the owl.


    My weekend’s been crazybusy. I have a craft show coming up next weekend (, and I’m trying to finish up the stuff I’m going to sell. Anyone in the far north Houston area who sees this post, please come by!

    I think it’s actually starting to cool off around here (despite the near-drought conditions); I’m finally able to wear jeans (instead of dresses/skirts) without sweating.

  7. I sent the link to the artist’s gallery to one of the people at work. He teaches sculpture classes, and one project he has his students do is make something interesting out of a bin of plastic cutlery. Nothing on the scale of that owl, of course, but the students do come out with some amazing things!

    I’m hoping the cold won’t rot my zucchini. It’s been a really bad summer for gardens, here (cold and wet), and they’ve only _just_ started to produce. One has over two dozen little baby zucchinis on it waiting for the right weather… (and no frost!)

  8. Very cool artwork.

    I worked all weekend, thanks for asking. Everything went smoothly, so no real complaints. And the weather was lovely.

  9. One of the reasons artists do not like you to take pictures of their art, paintings, photographs, etc could be that with a little bit of work with Photoshop you would have your very own copy.
    My weekend was rainy and cool and dang nab it the Steelers lost again

  10. El Guapo – Sunny New York – Went surfing in a hurricane. Now I'm looking for the next thing to do, and a soundtrack to go with it....
    El Guapo

    Nice spoons.
    My weekend was mixed – rough day surfing (but better than sitting at home), then a whole bunch of family stuff and chores.
    Could have been worse I suppose…
    Glad yours was fun!

  11. Hi, John. Gary Hovey here, the artist at Bear’s Mill. Thank you for the mention on your blog, I always like to see that my artwork brings people joy. The art being shown at Bear’s Mill is actually a two artist show, with my son and I. David, my son, does oil paintings while I do the sculptures.
    @Angelle, The painting in the background is my son’s, and you can see his artwork on his website,
    @tim eisele, I do bend the spoons with my mind. My mind tells my hands to bend the spoons.
    @Bill-in-DC, I welcome photographs of my work, it shows that people like my stuff. Plus, it’s free advertising!
    Thanks again, John, glad you liked the work!

  12. My weekend was pretty good. And I finally got some pictures of *my* daughter over at which was good. I originally tried to post them on flickr but twice the flickr uploader utterly failed to make the upload. No progress at all. That was annoying.

    We also went for a nice hike in the foothills of the mountains here in New Mexico. The West side of the mountains though, not the East side, which is where I understand the pumpkins hang out most of the year.

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