We met in Victoria Park at the beginning of the month for CAFKA – Contemporary Art Forum, Kitchener + Area.
Artist Meghan Harder had built shelters on the island for her exhibit The Civilization of the Wild.
We added to this exhibit by building a model cob oven. Our group member Alfred had constructed a shelter for it with a metal base. This was to hold the wooden frame that we built at our preparation meeting. See our last blog post to learn more about this part.
Lynn chopped straw for the cob that would go on the wooden frame.
In the meantime, Angel poured sand into the metal base and ensured it was even with a wooden stick.
He and Ana then arranged fire bricks in the base.
The wooden frame was centred on top of the fire bricks.
The straw was mixed with clay, sand, and water to form the cob. Community members joined us to participate!
With the cob prepared, we packed it in the bottom of the base.
We placed burlap around the wooden frame before we packed cob on it. It needed to be stitched to cover the entire surface.
We continued to pack on cob until there was no more to use.
It was time for a break! Ana, Angel, and Alfred had thoughtfully brought snacks to share.
We had a visitor come to see us. He made an appearance throughout our build!
We made cob another two times. Angel and Julie measured the clay.
Ana chopped the straw.
We were joined by more community members and had interesting conversations.
Once we covered the top, Alfred pressed it down. He also added a layer of clay and water where it was uneven.
We were proud of what we accomplished together.
Our cob oven model will be on display until the end of June. Go and check it out!