Anderson’s guitar venture

Jon Anderson lives and works in Bali. His distinctive animal sculptures, densely covered with rich polymer cane patterns, have for years been found in galleries across the US.

Now Anderson has branched out, covering custom electric guitars with polymer for Hand Guitars. Hear him talk about his 50-pound, 12-foot canes in this video (at the top of the column at right) taken at a trade show in Nashville. The guitars range from $1800 to $6000. Here are more pictures and videos of the new venture.

Home Again

I’ve returned to the midwest with a head full of ideas and a suitcase full of dirty laundry. I’ll be unpacking both this week.

  • reply Artybecca ,

    Wow, those guitars are really something. I bet they catch the eye of every person at the guitar shows.

    • reply laurie prophater ,

      My sister gave me one of his pillow bead pendants several years ago. I find myself staring at the intricacies of the amazing cane work. The finishing is exemplary…you CANNOT find a seam.

      • reply Jeannie ,

        I was hoping he would share the cost of one the guitar’s. If I was a musician, I would have to own one.

        • reply Enkhe ,

          Absolutely amazing!

          • reply Cheryl ,

            Was on a cruise on the Princess Line this spring – Mr. Anderson’s animals were being sold in one of the boutiques on board…NICE work!

            • reply Loretta ,

              way cool!!!

              • reply Kathi ,

                oh my gawd. I love Jon’s work and to now see it on a guitar? Soooooo out of my price range (not to mention I got a new guitar last year) but man I would love to own one

                • reply Iris Mishly ,

                  didn’t know Jon is so young! probably never seen his face online before 🙂
                  his work reminds me of these endless details coloring posters, you can stare for ever, and always come back and see new details.

                  • reply jan montarsi ,

                    Wow! Amazing work. Iv’e often thought about this. My nephew is in a heavy metal band and has his own signature B.C. Rich guitar. I didn’t think it was funcually feasable. I,d love to see Jon’s technique of appication and finishing!
                    His animal are unbelievable. I really love the penguins.

                    • reply Lenora ,

                      The work is astonishing and makes me want to make some other instruments. Back at Courting the Muse I took a class with Margi Lauren on making wind instruments from polymer – I made a set of pan pipes and an ocarina and still display them in my booth at music festivals. There was a flute in the “Polymer Clay 2000 calendar” which inspired me to make one and I got as far as the head joint (because I wanted mine to be tuneable so I could play with other people) – time to think about finishing it.

                      It’s not the largest application I’ve heard of, however. Some years ago the Rochester (NY) guild did a life sized horse covered in clay which I think they baked in an auto body oven. There was an article about it in the NPCG POLYinforMER.

                      • reply Deb Tuchsen ,

                        Absolutely stunning! What a treasure one of those would be to own!

                        • reply Grace Enebo ,

                          I am very curious about this method, does it affect the sound of the guitar and did he bake it separate and then glue it on to the guitar? How did he glue it? It is awesome, I know a lot of musicians and I’m sure they would love this!

                          • reply lisa Mackin ,

                            I’m so impressed by this application. I’m not a musician and know absolutely nothing about guitars but am intrigued with the idea of covering things with clay. I like the idea of Jon Anderson’s signature artwork being imprinted on the instrument. It’s a nice collaboration of the arts.

                            • reply Deborah Groom ,

                              Wow. This would make any musician weak in the knees. These are fine art with a hard rock edge. Fabulous.

                              • reply Kathy Swenning ,

                                Wow – amazing.
                                I’m so used to working with such small scales in my beadwork. The thought of covering a guitar is mind blowing!
                                Simply gorgeous designs!!!
                                Inspiring for all polymer artists.

                                • reply Carolyn Good ,

                                  Wow! The guitars are absolutely amazing and I love how 2 people managed to colaborate their skills to create such masterpieces. Thanks so much for sharing this with us! Truly inspiring!!!

                                  • reply liz & frog ,

                                    His work is really very impressive

                                    • reply Cynthia Becker ,


                                      • reply Cynthia Becker ,

                                        Every time I pass through C Concourse at Denver International Airport, I stop in the gift shop there that carries Anderson’s work. His animal figures are wonderful but the guitar is fabulous. And, to think I spent the entire summer in Nashville and may have missed an opportunity to see it! Thanks for featuring the guitar.

                                        • reply Martha ,

                                          Ten years ago I saw some of Anderson’s stuff in a gallery. At the time he was putting tiny cane slices on an info card they gave out gratis. I still have it. He does the most amazing cane work I’ve ever seen. Fifty pound canes that are four meters long? That guitar stuff is mind boggling! Captain Beefheart? !:)

                                          • reply Jeannie Havel ,

                                            An Anderson animal sits on my bookshelf. I am in awe of the intricacies. And speaking of polymer clay covered guitars, the first one I ever saw belongs to Bryan & Sarajane Helm. I’ve always wondered how the sound is affected, but really, who cares? It’s another kind of creativity.

                                            • reply Trina Williams ,

                                              And I have one of his lizards. Interesting that I was in the Robert Shields gallery in Sedona this week and no Jon Anderson animals. They used to be partners. I think Robert is promoting his own work now. There was one piece of jewelry with part of an intricate cane.

                                              • reply Think big! ,

                                                […] we’re on the subject of big, check out this new video (at the top of the right column) from Hand Guitars that shows Jon Anderson rolling out one small component of a very large and complex […]

                                                • reply Reclusive polymer | Polymer Clay Daily ,

                                                  […] his reclusive nature has made him something of a mystery in the polymer community. (You may remember his custom guitar designs from an earlier PCD […]

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