Claude Froulin (physicist and musician)
This is what the rock looks like when leaving the quarry: an industrial machine-cut slab. To a cartesian mind like mine, it resembles nothing so much as a large anonymous public housing project. Or worse, a giant slice of swiss cheese ... but without the holes.
Suffice it to say I will never be a sculptor.
Watching Suzel Galia as she approached the stone only reinforced my understanding that I was witnessing a very "un-cartesian" sensibility.
She began, literally, by walking around the rock, taking its measure (in every sense). Then, with a thick mason''s pencil, she began to roughly sketch a few lines on its surfaces.
This is more or less what the slab looked like at that point (I should again add I am in no way artistically gifted)
Suzel then took up her grind-machine(?) (meuleuse) (12,000 rpm) and the miraculous dance of creation began. As Alain wrote, "The precision tool positively purrs when used with pleasure and talent".
When she had finished working with the hefty machine, and once the dust had settled, what she had in mind became apparent. As sudden and powerful as a thunder clap this phase of her work had been as suprising as impressive. That outburst of energy was then followed by the long slow work of refinement: the heavy mason''s hammer, chisels of all sorts, and sandpaper replaced electrical machinery as Suzel carefully honed the curves and volumes. The artist''s hands giving shape to the artist''s heart and soul.
This final stage of her work seemed to me the most striking. Perhaps because, as in love, the patience needed to strip away layers of resistance in order to reach the essence is indeed wonderous to behold.