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I   Primary Sources

The Wheelwright’s Shop 

 by George Sturt

Cambridge University Press 1934  (1923)


If there is a single book that we could refer to as inspiring the STONE Project, this would be it.  Although well known in many circles, we are personally grateful to the sculptor Wade Saunders for introducing the book to us some years ago.

The Wheelwrights Shop is a beautifully written book that describes a culture and a world of attentive craftsmanship that has probably never been articulated so well. Sturt had been a school teacher before he took over the Wheelwrights shop that had been run by his father and grandfather. He muses on skill versus academic learning, which he sees skill as the repository of centuries of common wisdom. Although there are references to earlier times, the book covers the period from 1884 to about 1929, a period that began to introduce the seeds of our modern ideology. It is a wonderful first person account the social and occupational history precipitated by industrialisation, and specifies some of the detailed knowledge that is lost, like when and how to cut wood.

'It shows in the author a combination of the gifts of a handicraftsman, the actual maker of things, with the powers of a writer, in a way not common in English literature.'

—   The Times Literary Supplement 




Stones of Rimini 

Adrian Stokes


Adrian Stokes is a critic whose writings are unusually clear and full of insights. He seems to speak to artists more than do other critics.   He is important for articulating and using the carving -modeling distinction which is important to many points in these texts.

The writing of Adrian Stokes is full of little insights such as these:

“Carving all stones, we shall find, is essentially a thinning.”


There is always the element of disclosure in true carving.”

He also makes asides that suggest that there is still a lot to do. Nicholas Penny almost certainly took a clue from the following remark, and as a consequence wrote a  really excellent book. One book is not enough and Stokes’ observation is true.

“The influence of material upon style is an aspect of art history that is never sufficiently studied.”

Stokes is an important spokesperson for touch:

“ Hand-finish is the most vivid testimony of sculpture.  People touch things according to their shape. A single shape is made magnificent by perennial touching.  For the hand explores, all unconsciously to reveal, to magnify an existing form. Perfect sculpture needs your hand to communicate some pulse and warmth, to reveal subtleties unnoticed by the eye, needs your hand to enhance them….Even granite is heightened by human touch. Continual contact with hands and clothes causes nearly all stones to develop a smooth surface which is seldom observed to flake off.”

He even makes the case for touch in curious and insightful asides. In the following quote he makes a plea not just for touch but for a sensitivity to context.

“Still the invention of the fork in the late Middle Ages has probably meant more household everyday ugliness than can be ascribed to any other cause.  For when one eats with fingers or chopsticks it is necessary to hold the receptacle near the face. Since thus it is held the eater is most conscious of the receptacle’s meaning.  It will probably be a bowl, lovely and convenient to the touch, lavish to the mouth, deep to the eye.  If we ate without forks we would not stomach common crockery.”




The Critical Writings of Adrian Stokes 

Volume II 1937-1958




A Sense of the Earth 

David Leveson

The Natural History Press


This book manages to be both scientific and passionately involved. David Leveson feels completely part of the earth.

“ The legitimate domain of geology includes the earth — its interior, its surface, its seas, its atmosphere — and all that has happened to it during its five billion years of existence.  It is, however, one thing to claim a kingdom, quite another to rule it. For all the glory of the geologic realm, most of it lies beyond the reach of the geologist: obscured by the mists of the past, covered by the depths of the oceans, buried under tens, hundreds or thousands of miles of rock.  The geologist runs around on the small patches of the earth available to him and thinks about the rest. It is not a gloomy picture, but it is a situation that demands the utmost ingenuity — practical and theoretical.”


“There is an innocence about rock. …The pebble in my hand, the boulder I stand on, the cliff next to my face that shades me are quiet and deceiving  …  If in an excess of energy I hurl the pebble into the sea or pry the boulder loose and let it roll down the slope, I may feel I am the master…I gain a temporary illusion of power, even if secretly I know that in the long run I am less enduring than they. … That this is an illusion, however, is clear. The boulder on which I stand, the pebble that I release or hold — it is they, really, that hold me.”


“A strange phenomenon of our time is that we seem to be impressed by our own insignificance.  The larger the universe, the more remote our celestial neighbors, the smaller the earth in comparison to giant planets and stars, the better. The same holds true for the temporal dimension.  We are awed by the geologists assurance that the age of the earth is measurable only in years that number in the billions, or that a given rock has endured for a healthy fraction thereof. This inclination for belittlement is a recent development. From the Middle Ages to the start of this century the trend was quite the opposite.  Everything possible was done to assure man that he was the center of a universe designed by God for him.  Furthermore, the duration of this divine whim was at most a few thousands of years; that is, long enough only to accomplish the unraveling of biblical events.

But both of these seemingly contrary emotions, the delight in insignificance and the urge to be the focus of the universe and God’s attention, have in common an interest in an awareness of man’s place in space and time. Man may be short-lived and of infinitesimal size, yet to the extent that he is natural, he shares in the glory of nature’s magnitude and, moreover, what ever little he does accomplish is that much more impressive in the face of such vastness.”

Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects is how he demonstrates the difficulties that can come from drawing false conclusions from limited knowledge.

“Another complication arises when layered rocks have been tilted or folded so that in places the sequences of layers is inverted. …if the identity of the rocks is ambivalent, a wrong guess as to whether the sequence is right side up or inverted can result in a reverse picture of the nature of the folds: upwards will be taken for downwards, folds that die out in the east will be thought to die out in the west.  The solution to this problem lies in the recognition and discovery in the rocks of features that have right side up and upside down unmistakably built into them. For instance, when ripple marks form in sand on the floor of the ocean, their troughs are rounded and their crests are pointed.  If these ripple marks are preserved in the rock, the points of the crests will indicate which direction was originally up.”


The Problem of Form In Painting and Sculpture

Adolph Von Hildebrandt

G.E. Stechert & Co


One of the more interesting theoretical approaches to sculpture written by a practicing sculptor toward the end of the 19th century, and influential for many sculptors the early years of the 20th century.  It is a book on sculpture as perception. A distinction can be made between the place of apprehension and the location of the apprehended. As the author says, “Visual impression and kinesthetic idea both relate to the same object, but usually bear no distinct, essential relation to each other.” He proposes that sculpture has to do with movement.

“The closer the observer approaches, the more eye movements will have to make and the more will the original complete picture be slit up into separate views.  … movements of the head are often made for the purpose of bringing together successive perceptions of an object from different points of view….When we close one eye it is as though we threw the object into a greater distance…Since our idea of three-dimensional form are so largely kinesthetic, it follows that if the visual projection is to express a spatial content, it must contain suggestions, at least, of movements. …The sculptor’s specific mental material consists in kinesthetic ideas. … There can be no doubt that our general sensations of space are very closely connected with our ideas of movement. “ 

As a practitioner, and as a theorist, Von Hildebrandt respects action over pure theory .

“…Art does not depend on a mere knowing, but on a doing which puts this knowledge into practice…most theories of Art exhibit a useless quantity of reasoning and a dearth of practical experience…The idea which informs the artist’s creation is one thing, the process of the creation is another…We must strive to understand clearly the connection between the artist’s inner mental processes and the realization of his ideas in his work.  …technical progress and factory work have caused us to value a product more for itself than as a result of some mental activity….The importance which attaches to the natural growth of a work of art can hardly be overestimated.” 

For Hikdebrand, the plane is central to both perception and sculptural action.

“…the space of which we are clearly conscious when we attend to the distant plane lies behind it…. There must be a potent force drawing our ideas into the distance, for the secret of a picture’s unity of effect rests on the unity and force of that factor which draws us into its depth….Pictured objects may thus be held apart in distance, yet be united in a two-dimensional effect.  The development of this may be traced in the symmetrical figure-pictures of the early renaissance.  At first these figures were arranged entirely in one plane. But gradually the arrangement became looser as artists learned the possibility of producing the effect of a unitary plane indirectly and in spite of the disposal of the objects through several planes of distance. …artistic representation is concerned with a distant view."

 Hikdebrand’s understanding of sculpture owes much to Michelangelo’s approach.

“ Sculpture has undoubtedly evolved from drawing; by giving depth to a drawing we make of it a relief, and this relief may be regarded as the animation of a surface….primative sculpture in the round may be easily looked upon as a result of surface drawings carved into the block. …the advance is gradual, from plane to plane as the planes succeed each other….Only after the first plane has been perfectly exposed may he  enter into the next.  … When we consider that the imagination is actually being formed during the very act of representation, we can readily understand how differently the artist must be influenced by direct cutting in stone and modeling in clay."




Personal Knowledge

Michael Polanyi

Chicago University Press  1958


Polanyi’s main insight is that we know more than we can say.  The  thoughts that grow from this observation suggest that there could be a useful reappraisal  of the means and the capacity of acquiring knowledge.  Polanyi recognizes  the limits of language. While assessing language he says:


“An object alleged to be a tool is not a tool if our conception of its alleged use is altogether mistaken … or if it otherwise fails to serve its alleged purpose; it is an error to rely on a tool in such a case.”

As the philosopher of tacit knowledge, Polanyi also contributes to an understanding of connoisseurship:

“Connoisseurship, like skill, can be communicated only by example, not by precept.  To become an expert wine-taster, to acquire a knowledge of innumerable different blends of tea or be trained as a medical diagnostician, you must go through a long course of experience under the guidance of a master.   Unless a doctor can recognize certain symptoms, e.g. the accentuation of the second sound of the pulmonary artery, there is no use in his reading the description of syndromes of which this symptom forms part.  He must personally know the symptom and can learn this only by repeatedly being given cases for auscultation in which the symptom is authoritatively known to be present, side by side with other cases in which it is authoritatively known to be absent, until he has fully realized the difference between them and can demonstrate his knowledge practically to the satisfaction of an expert.  Wherever connoisseurship is found operating within science or technology we may assume that it persists only because it has not been possible to replace it by a measurable grading.” 




The Tacit Dimension

Michael Polanyi

Peter Smith Publishers 1983

The Tacit Dimension followed Personal Knowledge about ten years later and is based on the Terry Lectures that Polanyi gave at Yale University, and developed the ideas further. It continues his thought that “we can know more than we can tell.”

“ [The structure of tacit knowing] shows that all thought contains components of which we are subsidiarily aware in the focal content of our body. Hense thinking is not only necessarily intentional…it is also necessarily fraught with the roots that it embodies. It has a from-to structure….Since subsidiaries are used as we use our body, all novel thought is seen to be an existential commitment….when originality breeds new values, it breeds them tacitly, by implication; we cannot choose explicity a set of new values, but must submit to them by the very act of creating or adopting them.”

“ [The basic structure of tacit knowing] always involves two things, or two kinds of things. We may call them the two terms of tacit knowing.  … it combines two kinds of knowing….we know the first term only by relying on our awareness of it for attending to the second….Using the language of anatomy, we may call the first term proximal, and the second term distal. It is the proximal term. Then. Of which we have a knowledge that we may not be able to tell.”

“…it is not by looking at things, but by dweling in them, that we understand their joint meaning.  We can see now how an unbridled lucidity can destroy our understanding of complex matters. Scrutinize closely the particulars of a comprehensive entity and their meaning is effaced, our conception of the entity is destroyed…Repeat a word several times, attending carefully to the motion of your tongue and lips, and to the sound you make, and soon the word will sound hollow and eventually lose its meaning…We can make ourselves lose sight of a pattern or physiognomy by examining its several parts under sufficient magnification.”



Sculpture in Stone 

Josepmaria Teixidó I Camí  & Jacinto Chicharro Santamera

Parramon Ediciones, S.A.2000 / Barron’s 2001




Mount Analogue 

René Daumal

First published in French in 1952 / English 1959

This slender and technically unfinished book could be about many things — ecology, for instance, or the relationship of action to a spiritual search — but when it is read with the conviction that it is about stone carving it yields many insights. 

When the narrator first sees the handwriting of Father Sogol  he identifies it as:

“ a shifting blend of violence and gentleness. ”

The attempt to find the invisible mountain hidden within the normal earth begins to sound like finding a sculpture within a raw stone.  It defines alpinism as

‘…the art of climbing mountains in such a way as to face the greatest risks with the greatest prudence.  Art is here taken to mean knowledge realised in action.”

One member of the expedition tells a legend she had heard at high altitude of “Hollow Men” who live in solid rock, where they have houses whose ‘walls are made of emptiness.’  They learn of unusual plants with specific powers, one whose growth is so powerful that the narrator compares it to ‘slow-motion dynamite’ and is used to unseat boulders when needed to build or terrace.  When they began their ascent they began eliminating things they had originally brought along but now seemed unnecessary.?

In the ascent one step always prepares for those who follow: the custom is that shelters or encampments  are always left fully prepared for the next arrival, even to the point where they might stay occupied until the next group of climbers is about to arrive.    A sense of community, whether contingent or more distant, binds all climbers together. Within a larger context there is visible and invisible help.

The peridam, a stone of special worth, is so perfectly transparent that it escapes the notice of everyone except those who are inwardly prepared to see it.

His paragraph on shoes is an eloquent description of the relationship with tools.

“Shoes, unlike feet, are not something you’re born with. So you can choose what you want,  At first be guided in your choice by people with experience, later by your own experience.  Before long you will become so accustomed to your shoes that every nail will be like a finger to feel out the rock and cling to it.  They will become a sensitive and dependable instrument, like a part of yourself.  And yet, you’re not born with them; when they’re worn out, you’ll throw them away and still remain what you are.”

The book was never finished because Daumal died young in 1944, but the notes at the end become almost a guidebook for both the book and ‘knowledge realised in action.’

“The last step depends on the first. Don’t think you’ve arrived just because you see the summit. Watch your footing, be sure of the next step, but don’t let that distract you from the highest goal. The first step depends on the last.”



Stone Dust

Lenore Thomas Straus

Sun-Stone 1969

This is a book of poems with original woodcuts. There are many insights and observations about the carving process that come directly out of working observation.   Examples such as these give the spirit of the book:

“What ancient knowing lives within these hands?

What cells constructed from what decay?

What meandering, directionless transformations of the elements, from dust to air to linked bodies locked in love, breath-mingled, as the moist fluid creates, unknowing, the knowing hands that carve this stone?

The stone that lives when body dies again. 

This passionate stone that with cold hunger consumes the carver.

In this union there is no rest.

No more completion than in that endless effort to touch another spirit within its complex cellular enclosure and blend two beings fully.

It cannot be.

Each is alone.

But again and again the hands are formed that carve a stone.”


It sometimes feels as if a scrap of paper was scribbled on during carving itself 



“Does the stone use me to find itself?  Some days it is so remote, standing separate from me, that my hands cannot pick up the tools to touch it.  Any intrusion of my troubled nature is rejected.  It is itself. Complete. Silent. Resistant.


Can pain be transmitted to the stone through the hammer’s blow?  Can joy be absorbed in rock to sound in stillness?


And as the tool tenderly shapes the stone, the hidden self of that granite is given into my hands.  The rock falls away to reveal that which is not of my making.   Who is the carver?


“And as the tool tenderly shapes the stone, the hidden self of that granite is given into my hands.  The rock falls away to reveal that which is not of my making.  Who is the carver?”




The Tender Stone

Lenore Thomas Straus

Galaxy press 1964






In the Company of Stone:  The Art of the Stone Wall

Text: Dan Snow   

photos: Peter Mauss

The book is a beautiful combination of photos and text. It is a meditation on walls but also a sensitive consideration of stone itself.  It discusses harvesting of stone from the fields rather than quarries, a stone’s placement in a wall, and the various kinds of attention that stone walling can and does produce.

He considers the possibility of work being remedial:

“All loose stone was once part of the living earth.  In walling, I bring stone back together, even if artificially and only temporarily, and reunite it with the earth.  Walling puts back what comes apart.”  (p 8) 

He understands that sorting material exerts a dual creative: force:

“The first steps I take in the construction of a dry stone wall are a continuation of those taken long before.  Land that was free of stone was prized by earlier generations.  Removing stone made the ground more accessible.  Plucking it from the surface of the ground opened the ground up for foraging and growing crops.  Set into a wall, it acted as a barrier between livestock and crops.  Farmers harvested it along with their potatoes and pumpkins”    (p 8) 

He considers a wall as mutual interactive energy::

"The skill of walling is in the taming of randomness, the bringing together of disparate shapes into a unified form.  While still in a stockpile, stones can be assigned different degrees of usefulness, but after I put them in the wall, they share equal importance.  The wall teems with interdependent individual stones, and its beauty comes from the stone’s combined character.” (p 83) 


“During construction, every stone is set in the interest of what will follow it.” (p 80) 

 His insights about the paradox of walls as containers is strangely reassuring.

“Walls are ‘never to be opened’ boxes of stone.  They are carefully crafted containers that are always full and cannot be opened.”  (p75)

The thoughts contained in the book are not exhausted here.




Listening to Stone

Dan Snow

Artisan  Press  2008

This book was begun as an inventory of Dan Snows stone-wall projects, but it is full of insights as he tells his story.  In one case he builds a column twice, a bit reminiscent of the towers Milarepa’s built for Marpa,  a difficult master who three times insisted that he take the tower down and build it somewhere else. (Milarepa built four towers apparently like Dan Snow from the same stones: round, semi-circular, triangular, and square.

Dan Snow writes very well, with modesty and respect.

“…what I had to offer on the subject was matched at every turn by what the subject had to offer me.”

He shares generously, and still appreciates solitude

…” While a morning of walling can literally fly by when you are on your own, if someone steps up behind and watches, those minutes become interminable.  Alone you can set your mind loose to play in the wide open fields, but when there’s company afoot you need to call it back over the threshold of consciousness and extend the courtesy of attention to a guest, in spite of any remonstrations on their part to continue as though they weren’t there.”

He expresses appreciation of tools such as the pry bar and the spirit level:

“If I had to choose just one tool to take to work it would be a pry bar.  It can be thrust at the ground and used like a pickaxe to dig, or employed like a jackhammer to pulverize a high point or crack off a protrusion on a stone.  It’s a basic lifting device when used in conjunction with a fulcrum and a rudimentary shifting device for pinching a stone along. A bar end can be dangled from the fingertips of one hand to check the plumb on cheek end of a wall.  With a bar gripped in my hand like a walking stick I move my construction sites with confidence. It’s the staff of my working life.  A good pry bar is a reliable consultant and dependable companion.    … The truer a bar stays to straight over its four-foot length the more effective its power.  A bent bar doesn’t translate energy to deed accurately.  Forces go off in unintended directions, at unpredictable moments. With my full weight on it, a crooked bar can suddenly crack sidewise, jump off its mark, and send me sprawling.”


“… at the start of a project I strive to make a connection with the horizontal. … There are structural advantages in aligning a piece of work with the horizontal.  The force of gravity presses most directly on a level plane.  Stone that is bedded flat sleeps soundly… The information deciphered through the level’s vial of liquid spirit is accepted as doctrine, the final word of the day.  For the hard-bitten worker of stone, it is perhaps the only time truth will be found in a bottle. Maybe it is because it is the bubble telling the story, and not the alcohol, that a level ranks right up there as one of the most accurate and dependable tools on the job.  The moral of the bubble’s story is this: ‘Without that which is missing, what is there cannot be measured.' "

And technique such as hammer use and moving stone. The most unusual from when he was working in  Switzerland:

“When I was a kid my father taught me to box.  He said if I was going to punch someone in the stomach, aim for their backbone.  The same principle goes for getting the most out of a hammer swing.”

“…my companion flopped a big evergreen bough to the ground beside the pile.  He pitched a dozen stoned onto it.  As soon as he lifted the butt end of the branch up as high as his hip the whole load started to slide downhill.  He walked ahead, keeping control of the makeshift stone-boat by raising the but to speed it up, and lowering it to brake.  The fronds of slippery pine needles and the thin lawer of wet snow combined to keep the bough and cargo smoothly gliding along.  I loaded up a bough of my own and began freighting stone.  The sled was propelled by the weight of its load. All I had to do was finesse it along.”




The Craftsman

Richard Sennett

Penguin Books ( Allen Lane)  2008






Practical Stone Masonry

John David & P Hill

Donhead 1995


The authors, by summarizing three earlier books on masonry show how the emphasis in Stone Masonry has changed over a short span of a hundred years.   The changes trace a telling lineage, paralleling the sense of change that inspired our Stone Project research.

The earliest book on Stone Masonry, and perhaps one of the earliest manuals that exists, was from 1895 (Practical Masonry by W.R. Purchase). Books on craft skills before that time were unlikely because apprentices were expected to receive their training directly  from skilled masons.  In 1895 there is no mention of machinery and only a few pages on banker work. Still that a book was published at all is significant.

Thirty five years later much had changed. Modern Practical Masonry by E.G.Warland  (1929) gives the picture of stone masonry as a trade where traditional was still strong. Although progressively mechanized, machinery was seen as an additional tool, essential to keeping costs down. The skilled mason’s role is not threatened. He comes in when something cannot be done by machine.

Practical Stone Masonry was first published in 1995. It expresses a bit of anxiety that the skilled mason may not be there when needed.  The emphasis here is skilled masonry used in the repair and preservation of stone building.  Still the sense of rigour and pride is intact. And contagious.

Practical Stone Masonry covers architectural history of the trade, health and safety concerns, qualities of stone itself, particularly how it interacts and weathers, hand tools and their uses, lifting tackle, the fundamentals of setting out, thequalities of the stone worker, the role of the banker shop, intricacies of mortar, fixing onto buildings and cleaning.

Although there is a chapter on contemporary education structures, the authors tellingly assign that chapter to another writer, the only chapter they don’t write themselves. There is a respect for traditional precision and distinct attitude toward education as lineage.

“ The learning process happened by doing and, more importantly, it was unrushed. … the  mason master was not penalized financially for teaching an apprentice…” 

Anxiety that when the need for truly skilled traditional masons arises, the skills will not be there.

“A resumé of the state of training of masons draws attention to some of the potentially serious shortcomings of the current system that is now taking over from traditional apprenticeships.  Allowing a total tolerance of 2mm when working mouldings is hardly aiming for high standards in training.”

This is a book of extraordinary clarity.  It distinguishes, for instance, between template and templet.  The word template is commonly used to refer to a pattern to which a stone is cut.  For David and Hill template is reserved for its architectural sense — a stone slab on which beam-ends rests, sometimes called a padstone.  Templet is the word for a pattern cut from a rigid material showing the shape into which the stone is to be cut.




Ask the Fellows Who Cut the Hay

George Ewart Evans

Faber and Faber 1956

Although nothing as precise and important as The Wheelwright’s Shop, this book might interest those who would like to know more about old methods and traditions that are disappearing or have already disappeared.  It is primarily about farming, but rather than a personal account, it is a compilation of stories told by various old timers.  Evans makes the distinction of what he calls ‘felt facts.’ In one  chapter he describes ‘stone picking’ to clear the fields and strengthen  the roads. He also talks about Suffolk boats going empty to places like Newcastle and returning with coal. Many places, including much of New York are paved with stones that were originally ballast.

From a different line of work, my colleagues,

I bring you an idea. You smirk.

It’s in the line of duty. Wipe off that smile, and

As our grandfathers used to say:

Ask the fellows who cut the hay.

 — from   "The Decade of Shenh Min"   Translated by Ezra Pound







II     Other Sources

Stone in Scotland

Texts: Andrew McMillan, Ewan Hyslop, ,Ingval Maxwell

Earth Science Series

UNESCO Publishing 2006

Stone Built:  Orkney Photographs

Gunnie Moberg

Stromness Books and Prints 1979

Stone of Destiny

Pat Gerber

Canongate 1997  2005


Texts : Helen Rosslyn,  Angelo Maggi & James Simpson

National Gallery of Scotland  2002

The Ascent of Man

J. Bronowski


Gesture and Thought

David McNeill

Chicago University Press  2005

Gestures their Origins and Distribution

Desmond Morris, Peter Collett, Peter Marsh, Marie O’Shaughnessy

Jonathan Cape  1979

The Eyes of the Skin

Juhani Pallasmaa

Wiley & Sons  2005

The Fourth Dimension in Architecture

The Impact of Building on Behavior

Edward T. Hall


Stone Architecture: Ancient and Modern Construction Skills

Alfonso Acocella

Lucense SKIRA 2006 

All the Ways of Building

L Lamprey

MacMillan 1955

Technology in the Ancient World

Henry Hodges

Penguin Books 1971

A History of Technology

Volume I

Singer, Holmyard and Hall

Oxford 1954 (1967)

The Substance of Civilization

Stephen L. Sass

Arcade Publishing 1998

Tools and their Uses

Prepared by the U.S.Navy Bureau of Naval Personnel

Dover  reprint  1971

The Nature and Art of Workmanship

David Pye

Cambium Press Cambridge University Press 1968

The Book of Trades

JostAmman & Hans Sachs

1568   Dover reprint 1973

The blacksmith’s Craft

Council for Small Industries in Rural Areas


Stone Tool Traditions in the Contact Era

Edited by Charles R Cobb

University of Atlanta Press 2003

Vasari on Technique

Georgio Vasari

Translated by Louisa S Maclehose

Reprinted by Dover 1960

Sculpture: Processes and Principles

Rudolph Wittkower

Harper & Row 1977

Soft Stone Carving

C.A.I. Ritchie

St Martin’s Press 1973

The Materials of Sculpture

Nicholas Penny

Yale University Press


The first third of the book is dedicated to stone, The Materials of Sculpture is a treasure of sculptural information and thought provoking nuggets of insight such as these:

“It is worth emphasizing that only one work of art illustrated here…was designed for viewing by electric light, yet hardly any of them can now be seen without it.”


“In the 1580’s [White Apuan marble]…was used by the ruler of Morocco for his new palace at Marrakesh (paid for with equal quanties of sugar).

And it also contains practical information for the investigator:

“There are two important collections of marble samples available for consultation in Britain. One is in the Sedgwick Museum of Geology in Cambridge University which was created in the late nineteenth century and can be viewed by appointment. It’s range is extraordinary, but it is less strong on the marbles used in antiquity than is the collection formed by Faustino Corsi in Rome in the early nineteenth century. The Corsi collection is now in the University Museum in Oxford; part of it is on display and the parts in store can be viewed by appointment.”

Michelangelo: A Self Portrait

Edited by Robert J, Clements

Prentice Hall 1963


Anthony Bertram

Dutton  1964

Michelangelo’s Mountain

Eric Scigliano

Simon and Schuster  (Free Press ) 2005

Henry Moore: Writings and Conversations

Edited by Alan Wilkinson

Lund Humphrirs 2002

Sentences on Conceptual Art

Sol Lewit  1969

A Sculptors World

Isamu Noguchi,, preface by Buckminster Fuller

Harper & Row 1968

Scholar’ Rocks in Ancient China

The Suyuan Stone Catalogue

Kemin Hu

Weatherhill, Inc / Orchid Press  2002

Worlds Within  Worlds

The Rosenblum Collection of Chinese Scholars’ Rocks

Robert D Mowry,

Asia Society, New York

The Japanese Art of Stone Appreciation

Vincent T. Covello & Yuri Yoshimura

Charles E. Tuttle Company

Kyoto Gardens

Kinsaku Nakane

Hoikusha Publishing 1985 ( 1965)

Peripheral Visions

Mary Catherine Bateson

Harper Collins 1994

The Mind in the Cave

David LewisWilliams

Thames & Hudson 2002

The Phenomenology of Perception

Maurice Merleau-Ponte

Routledge  1945

Mind and Nature: a necessary unity

Gregory Bateson

Harper Collins 1972

Gregory Bateson is one of the most fascinating thinkers for artists. His father was a geneticist  (and coined the word genetics.) Gregory began as an anthropologist, writing an unusual book in 1939 called Navin, which in the years since it was written has proved to be an important contribution to our understanding of context. In Navin  he describes a primitive culture from several points of view. This set the stage for later thinking about ecology. During WWII Bateson helped develop Cybernetics.

Bateson’s concept of the “Double Bind” earned his recognition as the father of family therapy.   His “meta dialogues” which form some of the individual chapters in his book  Mind and Nature are explanations of basic concepts such as entropy to questions posed by his six year old daughter. He continues to explore many topics in Notes Toward an Ecology of Mind always looking for what he calls “the pattern that connects.” 

A Sacred Unity

Gregory Bateson

Harper Collins 1991

Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature

Richard Rorty   

Princeton University Press

Forests: the Shadow of Civilization

Robert Pogue Harrison

Chicago University Press 1992

What Calls for Thinking

Martin Heidegger


Michel Serres 

 University of Michigan Press 1995 (1982)

The Five Senses

Michel Serres

Empire of the Senses

The Sensual Culture Reader

Edited David Howes 

Berg/Oxford 2005

Techniques of the Observer

Jonathan Crary

MIT Press 1992

The Forge and the Crucible

Mircea Eliade

Harper & Row 1962 (1956)

Thought and Language

Lev Vygotsky

MIT Press 1986

The Materiality of Stone: Explorations in Landscape Phenomenology

Christopher Tilley

Berg Publishers 2004 


John Farndon

Dorling Kindersley 1998

The Map that Changed the World

Simon Winchester

Viking 2001  / Penguin Books 2002

A Source-Book of Ancient History

George Willis and Lillie Shaw Botsford

Macmillan 1922

Socrates Ancestor

Indra Kagis McEwen

MIT 1993

The Secret Life of Dust

Hannah Holmes

John Wiley & Sons 2001

The Anatomy of Judgment

M. L. Johnson Abercrombie

Hutchinson of London 1960

Educating the Reflective Practitioner

Donald Schon

The Laws of Form

G. Spencer Brown

The Book of Questions Volume II

Edmond Jabes 

Wesleyan University Press 1991 (1976)

Presence and Absence

Robert Sokolowsky



III     Gift Publications from Artists Visited

Steven Cox: Sculptor, Origins and Influences

Text: David Thorp

Bristol’s City Museum and Art Gallery


Stephen Cox was born and educated in Bristol, but has travelled for his influences to Italy, Egypt and India. This Exhibition celebrates his connection to Bristol, and the adventures in Stone over more than 25 years of work.

Jene Highstein: New Sculpture

Text: Thomas McEvilley

Anthony Grant, inc


Jene Highstein: A survey of Sculpture and Drawing

Text: Lilly Wei

Gallery Skape


Gerard Mas

Texts: Samuel Salcedo

3 Punts Galeria


El Mexico Precolombino y La Mirada de Jorge Yazpic

Texts: Luis Ignacio Sainz, , Alejandro Pastrana, Felipe Solis,

Institutob Nacional de Antropologia e Historia



Texts: Maria Todd Alvarez, Carlos Daniel Soto

Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico


Jorge Yazpic

Casa Luis Barragan


Mark Mennin

Texts: Christopher Sweet, Dore Ashton

Enrico Navarra New York 2007

Saint Clair Cemin, sculptor from Cruz Alta

Text: Richard Milazzo

Brent Sikkema Editions


Saint Clair Cemin

Text: Omar-Pascual Castillo

Sikkema Jenkins/ brito Climino/Templon


Walking the World of Art

Sun Ning-ming


Chinese text on Stone sculpture

546 pages

20 Jahre Steinbildhauersymposion am Utersberg 1986-2006

Susanne Tunn & Barbara Wally

Salzberg 2007

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