Break out your whittling knife

This winter has delivered a significant amount of snow to our part of Wisconsin, enough so the long time residents are starting to comment about it.  Our white Christmas has become a white winter.  Since I always think of the season in terms of snow this is great for me.

But what do you do with these piles of snow?

Obviously, hold a snow sculpting contest.  Turn all that snow into works of art for people to ooh and aah about.  And that’s exactly what happened this weekend on the water’s edge (well, the ice’s edge) at Lake Geneva.  Apparently it’s not the first time a bunch of crazy people have gotten together to celebrate the frozen stuff, either.  Read about it here.

And we’re not talking about really fancy “stack some big snowballs to make a snowman” sculpting.  These teams really get into the design and details of some pretty elaborate creations.  These would do justice to any other, more permanent medium but these people chose the more temporally (and temperature) challenged substance that’s lying around this time of year.

Local people bored with winter?  Oh, no.  Teams this year from Alaska, Colorado, Vermont, Nebraska, Michigan and other states worked their way from regional and state competitions to come to Wisconsin and compete for the national title.  And just to make them feel welcome, there were three hard-working Wisconsin teams right there with them.

You may be thinking how much work can this be, piling up a little snow and carving out some castles and such?  Well, start with a silo of snow nine feet tall.  Now remove all the snow you don’t need to make your creation.  And details count.

Here are some of my favorites.  Enjoy.

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8 thoughts on “Break out your whittling knife

  1. What amazing artistry and creativity. I really like the three dimensional aspect of sculpture and the way that it looks so different from different angles. I’d be tempted to stay indoors with the kind of weather that you have been experiencing.

    • Pat, I agree. Talk about seeing the final product in a mass of undifferentiated material! They were carving from Wednesday to Saturday noon, and probably didn’t get to see their final creation until almost the end. Gotta respect dedication like that. Makes pushing a shutter button seem frivolous!

  2. These are fantastic, what a great thing for tourists and locals alike. We have something similar carved out of marble in Grasse, South of France in the summer, they have a set timescale and it’s incredibly dusty/dirty work. Regardless of the medium, it’s a joy to appreciate the artistry and effort these guys go to. Bravo, that’s wot I say.

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