盤古開天 Pangu Creation Myth
When the universe was nothing but darkness, Pangu, the first being, was in an egg. As Pangu slumbered in his egg, he grew and grew, and the egg grew with him. One day, the egg grew so big that it broke apart, divided into heaven and sky. Pangu awoke from his hibernation, and held heaven and earth apart. As he did held heaven and earth apart, he grew in size, widening the distance between heaven and earth. When Pangu finally tired from this, he died, and heaven and earth were so far apart that they remained separate. When Pangu died, his body became the earth. While his physical presence no longer exists, his spirit is said to envelope and permeate the earth.
I have divided this creation myth into three parts: 1) Pangu in the egg, 2) Pangu holding heaven and earth apart, and 3) Pangu’s death and him becoming the earth.
EGG: After sculpting the second and first Pangus out of sculpey enforced with aluminum foil and wire armature, I bought a plastic egg from Michael’s for two dollars. I painted my figurines, then for the egg portion, I submerged the figurine halfway into the liquid plastic I had left from my toy project. After the liquid plastic cured and the figure was suspended in the plastic, I painted that portion a yellow, yolk-y color. Finally, I poured a layer of clear resin on top to give it a more finished look. For the exterior of the egg, I paper mached some Japanese chin-colle paper in layers. After several layers, I sanded it back down to achieve smoothness and partial translucency.
HEAVEN AND EARTH: The process for this was simple- I sculpted everything on top of foil armatures and painted the baked sculpey.
PANGU BECOMES EARTH: This was probably the trickiest component to execute from a conceptual standpoint. I decided to sculpt a series of mountains to symbolize the earth. Pangu’s trademark teal-colored pubic hair and gold parasite specks (which became humans, according to the myth) were crucial in translating the story from on phase to the next. I used Pangu’s horns to symbolize his presence in the atmosphere, adhering them to the fishbowl I had cheaply procured from Michael’s. After sculpting and painting the base for this part, I painted some gold flecks on the underside of the fishbowl, and attached some felted clouds and beads to the top of the fishbowl to represent the troposphere. I also poured a stream of resin in a little recess I had carved out for the river.
process images below: