Tuesday, May 19, 2009

More Bronze

Two last photos of the bronze casting series.

This photo is out of context.
This is actually the first part of the process.  
These forms are wax images of the original prototype sculpture.
They have been dipped several times in the slurry.
The yellow forms will become white after the wax
has been melted out and they have been baked.
The flared base is actually the cup into which the bronze is poured.

The forms in front are over sized roses for
a sculpture that Pat is currently creating.
These will be in the next pour.
Because of  the strange green-glowing flowers and organic shapes,
the wax room looks like some alien greenhouse "en Provence"!

This is a finished bronze from the pour in the last post.
The head shape can be seen in several of the photos in that post.
This bust was cast in 3 pieces, then welded back together and fine tuned.
The patina (surface color) is added.
The sculpture is waxed and ready to go.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Bronze Casting

The amazing and mysterious world of bronze casting!

This photo series is from last week at Shadetree Studio, a local fine art foundry/studio owned and operated by artist Pat Cochran.  I've mentioned him before.  He's the same artist who created the recycled sculpture a few posts ago.  Pat is a prolific artist whose sculptures grace the Treasure Coast landscape.

The furnace is fired up and the bronze ingots are pre-heating.

Pat places an ingot into the crucible
through the hole in the top of the furnace.

Suiting up.  

Skimming impurities from the surface of the molten bronze.

The molds, pre-heating to around 1400 degrees F.

The molds have been covered with sand.
This helps keep them hot until they are filled with bronze.
The tinfoil covers keeps the sand out of the molds. 

Removing the crucible from the furnace. 

Pouring the bronze into the molds.

Pouring the molten bronze, close up.
The bronze is approximately 2200 degrees F.

The molds after they have been filled.  At this point
the bronze has already solidified, but is still red hot. 

Replacing the crucible into the furnace for the next pour of the day.

Carrying the very hot molds out to the cool down area.
While the bronze is no longer red hot, it still is too hot
to handle directly.

Cooling down.
Still VERY hot, the molds will cool down more
before the shell is knocked off the bronze.

I love watching a bronze pour and consider myself lucky
to have had the opportunity numerous times.
 I think the big draw for me is that unbelievable molten 
metal that is the most indescribable orange.