Insull art

When I was in high school, our FFA group always made an annual trip to the State Fair. There are a number of experiences that are forever etched in my memory from those trips, but looking inside the head of an Insull figure always brings back one memory from those state fair days. I vividly remember how would stand at the booth of the gold wire artist, watching him deftly twist a strand of gleaming wire into a name or design for his customers. I would try my best to memorize each twist and turn the artist made with his small pliers, turning the wire into an attractive pin for wearing on a sweater or lapel. Then once our group had returned home, I would find a piece of steel wire and try to mimic that craft, with limited success.

All the many intricate mechanics inside the head of a figure by Insull are made of skillfully twisted and positioned wires. While not of golden wire, the piece is none-the-less, a true work of art, worthy of a gold award. As with my experience at the fair, I stand in awe at the sight. The difference is - I now know the secret to true artistry is years of repeated jobs, accompanied by their successes and failures, and from that learned perspective, while I still admire such work today, in most cases I am no longer tempted to mimic what I see!


  1. The fair experience gave you the secret to true artistry, years of repeated jobs, accompanied by their successes and failures. I have found that when make just the right twist, the right turn, to reach the optimum level, whether it be in the quietness of internal workings, or whatever, it is something that is never forgotten. If you achieve something once you can do it again.

  2. Any chance we could see the face of this Insull figure? I'm always interested in an Insull, the way some people want to see a Marshall any chance they get.

  3. The work is completed and the figure has been returned to its owner. I'll have to see if I took a photo of the face.