Perspectives of a Writer and Musician

Issues related to writing, publishing and playing jazz music: One man's muse.
by Al Stevens

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Location: Florida, United States

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

New Kid on the Block

The fellow shown here arrived at my workshop last week.

He was built by JC Turner, a figure-maker of some prominence in the 1930s and 1940s. This particular figure was repainted at some time in the past. Whoever painted him must have used yellow house paint. It's glossy and brittle. I'm thinking a chemical strip might be needed on this guy.

I disassembled the head. There are signs of repairs over the years. Whoever worked on him believed in using nails instead of glue. Apparently so did Turner. The three sections of his head were held together with nails and wood screws. Here he is in pieces.

I'm still working on getting the headstick off. It's held in place with a pin through the neck. But it isn't securely fastened and rattles around.

The eyes, which do not move, are ping pong balls with black marbles for irises and filled in with spackle. Both eyes were held in place with tiny nails. One also had a small wood screw holding it in. They were set in there in a cock-eyed fashion. I don't know whether that was on purpose or whoever worked on him couldn't get them straight. It doesn't matter. I kind of like the look and might retain it.

More to follow...