Thursday, October 27, 2011

Lost wax casting

I wanted to share some sculpture techniques with my Art Appreciation students. This week they are talking about media and Friday the class discussion was focused on sculpture techniques. I though it might be helpful to have some video or visual images to help describe metal casting, slip casting and glass blowing techniques.

Here is a video from YouTube demonstrating and describing the lost-wax casting for jewelry (small-scale).

You can also search for lost-wax casting videos of people making large-scale sculpture. I've watched several "How It's Made" episodes that describe the lost-wax-casting process for making an engine block or other industrial applications. The Wikipedia entry for Lost Wax Casting also gives a pretty good explanation with pictures of a larger object at stages through the process. If you have the opportunity to visit Maryhill Museum in Goldendale, they have a good display downstairs showing the various stages in the lost-wax casting process.

To watch the glass blowing process, visit Dale Chihuly's website. I recommend "In the Hot Shop" (the video starts after a few still images).

I am also including a video from YouTube on slip casting. During the next week, I will share some other pottery techniques (like wheel throwing and coil-building). The technique shown is for functional work at a factory. The same technique can be used for bathtubs and toilets as well as by individual artists.

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