Cleopatra Is Being a Royal Pain in the Neck

Cleopatra is not cooperating with me this week. “The Queen of the Nile” evokes such spectacular images in my mind, including Elizabeth Taylor’s classic smoldering look and lots of ornate Egyptian art.

When I was reading Margaret George’s novel The Memoirs of Cleopatra, I think I almost cried at the word “finis” on page 957. That was ten years ago, and being more of a “read it and enjoy it for the moment” reader than a history buff, I probably couldn’t tell you too much about Cleopatra. What strikes me about Cleopatra is her ability to create such a hold on a person simply at the mention of her name. Her ability to command attention and influence everyday imagery makes her an irresistible subject for a glass sculptor.

I have been working on a two-piece bead sculpture of Cleopatra. It didn’t start out as a two piece project, but in an attempt to make the entire piece bigger I tried making her head and upper torso separately. This is what happened:

cleopatra glass beads

The idea was to make an opening just inside the top of her neck so that the bottom of the head would fit into it. See how wide the neck turned out? I did it first, and as I stuck it into the kiln, I honestly thought I’d be able to eyeball the corresponding piece and get the right proportions. It wouldn’t be a problem. Ha!

Now I have a Cleopatra who is not only a royal pain in the neck but will obviously be in need of a chiropractor soon since she’s going to have a pain in the neck if she tries to move her head. I’d complain about it some more, but I think I’d better get to the torch and try this again!

Even though she knows her sense of proportion is out of whack, Angie Garren continues to try to sculpt the human figure at her worktable in the breezeway of her home in southern Illinois. Check out for quick links to her gallery of pictures, blogs, and Etsy shop.


4 Responses to “Cleopatra Is Being a Royal Pain in the Neck”

  1. Ellen Says:

    No matter what you do – fits or not fits – I love seeing your productions. I look forward to the end result of Cleo.

  2. Angie Garren Says:

    Hey, Ellen, this particular Cleo ended up as AngelinaBeadalina’s first glass Bobblehead (there’s a pic in my blog today at

    The next two I did have gotten a little closer each time, so hopefully I’ll get to show ya the finished project before long ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. lydiamuell Says:

    Oh Angie, I think she’s awesome!!! The character that you capture in your sculptures never ceases to amaze me!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Watch Me Create » Glass Collaboration: Learning in the Process Says:

    […] to the RSS feed or have it sent to you by email!. Don’t miss a thing!Remember when I told you that Cleopatra was being a pain in the neck? Well, she was my part of a collaborative project with another glass artist, Michael Mangiafico of […]

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