Decorative architectural molding has a long and, sometimes, peculiar history. The ornamenta- tion has not only been made from plaster, wood and stone. One of the most astonishing alternative forms occurs in what are often called “Bone Churches,” some of which can be found in Europe, such as the church of Santa Maria della Concezione on the Via Veneto in Rome. There the bones of dead Capuchin monks gaily decorate the walls and ceilings of five subterranean chapels.


Bones+Tools pairs Hydrostone casts of bones from an actual human skeleton with hand tools used in construction. In its various installations, the individual elements follow the existing architecture of each location and are attached directly to the wall in the manner of the Capuchin crypt (with perhaps some influence from Albert Barnes and Henry Mercer). It also pays homage to Andrea della Robbia’s Madonna degli Architetti.

At METHOD Gallery in Seattle, I arranged the casts to reflect the architecture of the room, which is distinguished by its angular windows. As part of the show, entitled "Invisible Alignment," I also referenced the dentil molding of the building across the street as seen from those windows. A linear series of orthodontic trays advanced along the wall in quest for aesthetic perfection.

All artwork on this site © Virginia Maksymowicz.

Most photographs are by Blaise Tobia or Virginia Maksymowicz

other photos are credited.

Some works are collaborative.

Some permissions for use and distribution

available through a Creative Commons License

Attribution - NonCommercial - NoDerivs 3.0