At the age of 13, Andrew Clemens (1857-1894), an artist from Dubuque, Iowa, began creating sand art from the multi-colored grains he found throughout the Pictured Rocks region.
He was able to make one-of-a-kind tools out of fish hooks and hickory to compose the intricate designs. Somehow, Clemens was able render each illustration grain by grain without the use of glue.
By relying on the tightly packed pressure of the surrounding bits of sand, he could build upon each project with such precision that it appears the designs were painted directly onto the glass surface of its vessel.
Once Clemens was finished arranging the perfectly pixelated grains into place, he would pack the jar tightly and seal it. Apparently, the talented artist produced hundreds of bottles during his lifetime, but there are only a few left in tact today.
Whether his talent was an innate, God-given skill or the consequence of being completely deaf and nearly mute, one thing is for sure: Take a glance at Clemens’ work and we guarantee you’ll be astounded by the details.
Check out the slideshow above for a handful of Andrew Clemens’ sand art.