Insects have always been a source of inspiration for me. Their hard exoskeletons give them a strong geometry rivalled by few other animals. This geometry makes them wonderful subjects to study in wire—something I have been doing for years.

Paraponera clavata

Completed: 2017 | Course: BXA Seminar I | Skills: wire sculpture

ant and fungus

This Paraponera clavata (bullet ant) has been infected by a Cordyceps fungus, which takes control of the ant's brain to reproduce. Under the fungus's command, the ant strays from its normal habitat and attaches itself to the undersude of a leaf; at which point the fungus kills the ant and begins sprouting from the ant's head. As the long stem grows, it spreads its spores to infect more ants.
I was gripped by the reproductive cycle of the Cordyceps fungus. Its ability to control the mind of another organism and manipulate the ant's motion to its will is something straight out of a science fiction movie. I am always amazed by the unbelievable power that exists in nature that can often go unnoticed unless you watch closely.

Pachydiplax longipennis

Completed: 2015 | Skills: wire sculpture


My mother loves dragonflies. We see them all over the place at our house during the Summer, and she and I are always enamored by the way the insects can navigate through the air with such control. I remember long Summer afternoons sitting on the grass with my mother and my siblings trying to lure dragonflies to land on our fingers.
In honor of our mutual affection for the insects, I made this sculpture for my mother's birthday while I was in highschool.

Leptoglossus occidentalis

Completed: 2012 | Skills: wire sculpture, found object structure

leaf insect

The Leptoglossus occidentalis, or Western conifer seed bug, is all over the place around where I live. These bugs crawl across the ground unbelievably slowly, but when stratled, they can fly quite quickly. Given the patterning on their exterior and their relatively flat body, they have incredible camouflage on the leaves and bark they evolved to spend most of their time on.
Interested in combining the insect with the very things it hides on, I made the sculpture from wood and leaves.

©2019 Sebastian Carpenter