Woodcarving & Dementia

I completed carving the above brain hemisphere out of Mahogany in September 2015. The piece “Mind Over Matter,” is now displayed permanently at the Cushing Center, Whitney Medical Library, Yale University, New Haven, CT.

You can see the image of the piece with title and photo credit here:

woodcarved-brain-hemisphere-image-correct-spelling-sep-2016

The image was taken by photographer Jason R. Campbell:  Website

Website:  The Cushing Center

Eilon_Caspi_at_Cushing_Center_Yale_University

Eilon Caspi at Yale University Cushing [Brain] Center on the day he donated his woodcarved brain hemisphere to the center in late 2015. Photo credit: Terry Dagradi, Cushing Center Coordinator

“Mind Over Matter” – Description of the wood carved brain hemisphere for the Cushing Center (including what inspired me to carve it) as well as the practical value for family and professional care partners:

Mind Over Matter 1page & Practical value for caregivers 1-page

A hard-cover booklet including over 60 images depicting the process of carving the brain hemisphere is now part of the display of the piece at the Cushing Center.

Cushing Center display of wood carved brain in jar and booklet II

A poster of the wood carved brain hemisphere was on display at the 2017 Keeping the Spirit Alive conference for family care partners of people with dementia. The conference was held at Adath Jeshurun Congregation on April 30, 2017. The conference, which was organized by Rita Kelner and Judy Witebsky, brought close to 350 attendees.

During the conference I started carving the above piece out of butternut wood.

The relief carving is completed on July 19 2017

Rita & Judy receiving the piece

On May 27, 2016, I gave the following video recorded interview:

“Mind Over Matter” – Wood Carved Brain Hemisphere and Its Potential Practical Value for Family and Professional Care Partners. Video Recorded Interview with Lori La Bey, founder, Alzheimer’s Speaks. May 27, 2016.

You Tube – Conscious Caring Resources – Dementia & Woodcarving:

On June 21st 2016 I gave a presentation for preschoolers at University of Minnesota’s Child Development Center. The talk focused on carving a brain hemisphere and included numerous images depicting the process. One of the teachers wrote me after the event: “Thank you again for coming! Our children were so impressed and we have continued to discuss how you can train yourself to become really good at something if you practice enough.”

preschoolers-pic-1-at-cdc-uom preschoolers-pic-2-at-cdc-uom preschoolers-pic-3-at-cdc-uom

During the Fall of 2016, I made a simple chair and donated it to the University of Minnesota Child Development Center (Toddlers bungalow). It is made out of a piece of a Silver Maple tree that fell during a storm in Minneapolis a year earlier. You can see a few pictures of the chair here:

A framed professional image of the brain hemisphere (see below) is available for purchase for $39.95 + Shipping.

To order, email me at: eiloncaspi@gmail.com

Picture of framed image of wood carved brain hemisphere - with caption

A 20×30 high-quality beautiful poster of the professional image of the brain hemisphere is also available for sell. The cost of a poster (not framed) is $29.50 + Shipping.

A framed 36×26 poster of the brain hemisphere is now on permanent display at the American Academy of Neurology (Address: 201 Chicago Ave, Minneapolis, MN; Across the street from the Guthrie Theatre).

American Academy of Neurology by the Guthrie Theatre

mind-over-matter-framed-poster-of-curved-brain-at-aan

The above picture was taken by photographer Siu Lee

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plaque-of-woodcarved-brain-hemisphere-at-aan

An image of the wood carved brain hemisphere has been published in Woodcarving Illustrated Summer 2016 Issue.

Woodcarving Illustrated I

My 1st brain hemisphere made out of Elm:

Brain - Wood carved

My 2nd brain hemisphere made out of Basswood:

woodcarved-brain-for-ilanit-october-2016

 

My 4th wood carved brain hemisphere made out of Mahogany. Commissioned as a retirement gift for a professor of neuroscience at NYU:

Picture of 4th wood carved brain hemisphere - June 2016

I’d like to declare, for anyone interested, how thrilled I was with the wood carved brain hemisphere provided by Eilon Caspi. This work was the centerpiece of an event honoring one of our distinguished faculty members, Charles Nicholson. How fitting that the brain was carved from a block of mahogany (see Eilon’s website), a porous material not all that different from the brain itself, whose winding canyons and crevices are critical for interchange of substances between brain cells and the space outside them. Eilon has a special touch with the material, based on a deep appreciation of the importance of the proper workings of the brain for everything that makes us who we are as sentient individuals. Memories, emotions and thoughts — all conjured up by something beautiful and lasting. I highly recommend Eilon’s work for education and enjoyment.” — Professor Richard Tsien

My dream is to carve a large-scale (a few feet) brain hemisphere and place it at the entrance to a museum of science or neurology/neuroscience center. Please let me know if you and/or your colleagues would like to explore this possibility with me.

A relief educational sign SEE ME Not My Dementia made out of Butternut:

SEE ME Not My Dementia on burtternut - with basswood background

Age is a question of Mind Over Matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”        — Baseball Player Satchel Paige

Mail box name sign made out of Basswood for my in-laws:

Eicher woodcarved sign

 

Hand made baseball bats made out of Ash  (without turning it on a lathe):

Before:

Baseball bat - row piece of Ash

After:

Baseball bat - outdoors 1Baseball bat - outdoors 2

Another baseball bat made out of Ash with my nephew’s name engraved on it (professional photographer Limor Weinberg Caspi):

Baseball bat with name engraving

Wood carved coffee table (using a segment of basswood tree one of hundreds of trees that fell during a big storm in the summer of 2013 in Minneapolis):

Wood carved coffee table I Wood carved coffee table II

A bread and cheese board made out of cherry wood (used here with challah):

Cherry wood bread and cheese board with challa I Cherry wood bread and cheese board with challa II

A chalah bread board with wheat stalks – “Commissioned” by my wife:

Chalah bread board

Chalah bread board - close up on wheat

A decorative plate made out of basswood with the names of my wife, daughter, and mine carved on it:

A woodcarved owl made out of basswood made for my daughter’s 2nd birthday:

My daughter shows the wood carved owl to her classmates

Contact Information

For questions, more information or to commission a woodcarved piece related to people living with dementia or other woodcarved items, please contact Eilon at:

eiloncaspi@gmail.com

Acknowledgement: Thanks to my old world woodcarving master Konstantinos Papadakis for teaching me woodcarving: Konstantinos Papadakis

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Konstantions Papadakis – Artistic Woodcarving Studio, Minneapolis, MN