Bark Series

I am working on a series of bronzes cast from organic burn-outs of pieces of bark.

Instead of using the lost wax process, I took the actual pieces of bark, dipped them into the slurry to build up a ceramic shell around the bark. I then put these in a furnace at high temperature (1800 F) in order to burn the bark (organic burn-out), which leaves their shape into which the melted bronze is poured. 

Making of "Rebirth"

 "Rebirth". Bronze. 10" diameter, 42 lbs, completed in April 2017

"Rebirth". Bronze. 10" diameter, 42 lbs, completed in April 2017

 It all started from this older piece...

It all started from this older piece...

 I discarded a few ideas such as this one....

I discarded a few ideas such as this one....

 ... before finally coming up with this one

... before finally coming up with this one

 Finished clay work

Finished clay work

 Cutting the clay into two pieces in order to make the mold

Cutting the clay into two pieces in order to make the mold

 The mold is complete. Four rubber parts and four mother mold parts. The mother mold is holding the rubber mold in place, and is made of hydrocal, which is a kind of plaster.

The mold is complete. Four rubber parts and four mother mold parts. The mother mold is holding the rubber mold in place, and is made of hydrocal, which is a kind of plaster.

 Brushing the wax in the rubber mold...

Brushing the wax in the rubber mold...

Carving "Shy?"

 "Shy?". Alabaster stone. 18" high. Completed in June 2017.

"Shy?". Alabaster stone. 18" high. Completed in June 2017.

 I just got a 50 lbs piece of Alabaster. I know what I want to do and draw it on the stone

I just got a 50 lbs piece of Alabaster. I know what I want to do and draw it on the stone

 A few holes with a power drill, and I carve off the coarse outline

A few holes with a power drill, and I carve off the coarse outline

 The curve of the back begins to appear...

The curve of the back begins to appear...

 Carving the front...

Carving the front...

 Carving the neck… big mistake… The head is now too heavy for the narrow neck. The head breaks off… I should have been more careful.Disappointment, but not a surprise…

Carving the neck… big mistake… The head is now too heavy for the narrow neck. The head breaks off… I should have been more careful.Disappointment, but not a surprise…

 Starting the sanding...

Starting the sanding...

 The finished piece after sanding and waxing, mounted on a ½” thick wooden base.

The finished piece after sanding and waxing, mounted on a ½” thick wooden base.

 Front view

Front view

Wax Burnout furnace

This is the furnace used to melt the wax in the lost wax process of Bronze making.

The piece is heated up to 1600 to 1800 F.

The piece is heated between 1600 F and 1800 F to melt and burn the wax in the bronze making with the lost-wax process.

Casting "Thinking Out Of The Box" in bronze

 "Thinking Out Of The Box" in clay. I am going to cast it in bronze.

"Thinking Out Of The Box" in clay. I am going to cast it in bronze.

 Making the mold

Making the mold

 Recycling the first wax cast after I messed up... (too many defects)

Recycling the first wax cast after I messed up... (too many defects)

 The two parts of the wax before being stitched together

The two parts of the wax before being stitched together

 The two parts of the wax cast ready to be stitched together

The two parts of the wax cast ready to be stitched together

 Gating completed

Gating completed

 Dipping in the slurry

Dipping in the slurry

 After the wax burn-out

After the wax burn-out

 Breaking the shell

Breaking the shell

 Raw bronze, after shell removed and the gates cut off.

Raw bronze, after shell removed and the gates cut off.

 After many hours of sanding and polishing....

After many hours of sanding and polishing....

 ...and finally....it is done (If it is ever...)

...and finally....it is done (If it is ever...)