Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Rock Cribs

Oil on board, 5" x 7"
$125.00 + $6.00 shipping in US.

The basalt foothills and mountains around here are in many places quite thinly layered with soil, making it next to impossible to dig post holes. Instead, deadweights called "cribs" or "jacks" are constructed of wood and filled with rocks. The barbed wire is stretched taut between them and then floating posts or thin metal ones are spaced in between.

Sometimes they remind me of old markers or monuments.


Anonymous said...

Don--In the vernacular of ranchers around Ukiah, you have painted rock cribs, while rock jacks are the triangular-shaped structures. which serve the same purpose. My brother and I dismantled more than one of these in the pursuit of cottontails. I don't recall that we were ever scolded, but I don't know why. My folks must have figured it was something to keep us busy. Glad your daily art is back!--Carrie Chicken

Don Gray said...

Hi Carrie,
Thanks for your note. Yes, that's the distinction I always heard too. The rock cribs are heavier and generally used for corners, while the lighter jacks are spaced between.

Ukiah's great country for rock-growing, isn't it? I've got a feeling you guys were lucky the ranchers who built those jacks didn't catch you :)

Frank Gardner said...

Glad you explained those. I would never have figured it out.

Don Gray said...

Frank, having grown up in this country, I remember being startled the first time someone asked me what a rock jack was. I just assumed everyone knew.

Anonymous said...

I am glad to see the barbwire theme creeping into your work. I 'm still wondering how you will introduce the concertina.