Drawing the Kingsteignton Idol

Back from Spoonfest, and internet access restored!

Before I went away I had been working on an important stage in making a replica of the Kingsteington Idol.   Drawings.

They aren’t my drawings.   This isn’t a commission.   I haven’t arranged to visit the Royal Albert Memorial Museum in Exeter to draw and photograph the Iron Age wooden figure.   It’s fragile and very special, best only handled when really necessary.   The drawings are those published in Bryony Coles’ (1990) paper about prehistoric carved figures.   A colleague very kindly scaled them up for me to save some time.

Relying on the published drawings for the form and dimensions of the figure presents problems though.   The front, back and one side of the figure only are illustrated.   Measurements can be taken from these perpendicular views, providing maximum and minimum but it is much harder to capture intermediate measurements without being able to examine the detail of the changes of each surface.

Nevertheless, I have traced the outlines and cut out templates, reversing the single side view to make its pair.   To see how these shape up, I have worked up a section of the Idol in a small piece of sweet chestnut.   Sweet chestnut can behave like oak (oak is what the Idol is made of) because it has similar properties.

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Not too shabby, but more work required!

Coles, B. (1990)   “Anthropomorphic Wooden Figures from Britain and Ireland”   Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society 56:315-333

 

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