In 1998-1999 I was going through a divorce-the classic kind; I was the last to know that my then husband had a girlfriend. The one thing I had asked him to promise me when we got married was that I would be the first to know if he didn’t want to come home to me. Well, he failed to keep that promise. On May 11,1998, I actually had a vision and I described to him the hotel room where he was staying with his lover. I didn’t figure it all out till later. He never told me anything-made me guess. So much for promises.
I was very hurt and dove into the clay-great for therapy. I would go to the studio every day and whipped up man-dogs before I started anything else. It was an emotional catharsis. I was making custom sculpture cups at the time that were supposed to be happy reflections of the personalities that they were being made for. I needed to cast out the negative feelings that I was drowning in-thus man dogs!
I used them for glaze tiles. I had quite a collection going when one day a woman strut into the studio and announced, “I need a man-dog!” She handed over twenty dollar bill and was out the door. I was in business. Betrayed and angry women became regular visitors. It became quite a joke; I was encouraged to open up a production house so that betrayed women could come in a throw together clay man-dogs.
You can only cry so much. In throwing together(literally) those man dogs and then watching them charge out the door, I learned to laugh.
I can’t even tell how many I’ve made over the 3 month period but they kept me in grocery money. These are photos of the ones I have left.
Photographs by Chuck Jones