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On My Mind: Jason Guffey, pipe cleaner sculptor

Jason Guffey

“This is insanely fun to do. It’s incredibly fun. That’s why I do it. It never stops being fun.”

Jason Guffey

Pipe cleaner sculptor

A sick day from school and a PBS art show changed Jason Guffey’s life. The show taught him in his early teens how to twist pipe cleaners to make simple stick figures, and Guffey never looked back. The 34-year-old’s fuzzy, flexible statues of comic book superheroes and video game characters have been featured at the Kultured Chameleon Graffiti & Glass Gallery during First Fridays this summer.

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I just made all my own toys … so when everyone wanted the new GI Joe, I’d just build it, and I just never stopped.”

“I do this out in public … and I mesmerize people with it. I’ll be working on something, and I’ll look over and there’ll just be two people intently staring like a cat or something.”

“If I find something, if I want to do something, I’m trying to learn how to do it with this … this is where I came from. I just try to think of doing something weird with pipe cleaners. What else can I do that nobody’s doing? Cause nobody’s doing this.”

“It’s second nature to me now. Doing the faces and stuff, it comes so naturally. I can’t draw to save my life. I do this better than drawing.”

“It’s not like I’m showing pipe cleaner sculptures . I’m showing sculptures. I mean, people will leave not knowing what they’re made out of. They don’t even think about it. They’re just like “that’s a cool Captain America sculpture” and they’ll walk off and it doesn’t even dawn on them. Which is kind of awesome because I’m aware totally that this isn’t Captain America. This is a wad of pipe cleaners.”

“My big goal is to build sculptures that are impressive, no matter what they’re made out of. They just happen to be made out of something that’s unconventional.”

“I’m definitely exploiting my medium . I’m definitely trying to use it. I like the texture, I like the fuzziness. I also like the sharpness of them, you know? Cause they’re fuzzy and soft and cuddly like something you wanna hug, but they’re also sharp.”

“As soon as I could build these characters , I was making superheroes, I was making Ninja Turtles, I was making cartoon characters, things like that. That’s how I learned. It’s what I do best.”

“If I’m on a deserted island and all I have is pipe cleaners, and I can make stuff out of them, that’s what I’m gonna do. I’m completely dedicated to this, and as long as I can do it, I’m wealthy.”

“My actual signature literally is written better with pipe cleaners . I’m better with pipe cleaners than I am with a pen.”

“If I can think about it, I can make it . If I see something I want, I can actually make it. …I somehow gained the ability to mold anything, but out of this weird media which is more of a benefit than it is a liability.”

Comments

  1. 2 years, 3 months ago

    Jason is Such a great Artist, and a good person. Anyone that knows him, is Blessed! He encourages people to be themselves if not evident through his art, just wait till you have a conversation with him!

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