Casting in bronze
Work cast in bronze using the ‘lost wax process’
Simon has used the Castle Fine Arts Foundry in Llanraeder ym Mochnant in mid Wales to cast his work in bronze.
Here we outline the process to cast ‘A Brisk Walk’ using the ‘lost wax process’.
Initially, Simon created the composition in modelling clay.
The foundry then made a silicone cast around the original clay sculpture. When the clay is removed, it leaves a ‘negative’ impression of the original figure in the silicone.
Wax is then poured in to the silicone negative. Once dry, the wax figure is removed from the silicone.
Wax runners are then fixed to the wax figure. These runners will allow the bronze to flow to every part of the figure and allow the melted wax to flow out.
The wax figure, with its runners attached is then encased in a ceramic shell. This will hold and contain the figure when the molten bronze is poured in to the mould.
The bronze is heated in a burner until it is molten.
The molten bronze is poured in to the ceramic shell. The molten bronze melts the wax which flows out of the shell through the runners.
Once the bronze is cool and solid, the ceramic shell is chipped away, revealing the figure. The runners (which were originally made of wax) have now become bronze, as the wax flowed out and is replaced by bronze.
The runners are cut off and the figure is fettled to remove any imperfections arising during the bronze casting process.
The figure is then polished and patinated to give the desired surface finish.
February 2021. The next piece, Mother and Child, is at the foundry.