Tamara Bonet Sculpture, Bronze and Ceramic Figurative Art
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Bronze Lost Wax Process

Below is a simplified explanation of how the process works. If you have any questions then just ask and I’ll do my best to explain. J

Bronze Lost Wax Process

Sometimes friends and family will ask about how the process works for making a bronze sculpture. It is a very involved process for sure. Once understood, people realize why bronzes are so costly. A lot of work goes into the making of each bronze in the edition. Never is there a reduction in steps or shortcuts. The work has to be done every step of the way but upon conclusion will be a beautiful, shiny, and glowing rendition of the original artwork.

Bronze Lost Wax Process

Making a bronze is created through the lost wax process.

  • Sculpt the original that will later go into bronze. I use water clay but some people use wax, oil based clay, Super Sculpey, or other polymer clays.
  • Make a rubber mold of the sculpture.
  • Pour wax into this mold and voila!, you now have a cast of your original in wax.
  • Sprues (wax rods) are attached to various points on the sculpture. These areas will later allow for liquid bronze to flow through one part of the sculpture to another.
  • The wax copy sculpture is then dipped in liquid clay and sand. This process is repeated until a hard ceramic shell is created.
  • Next the wax is heated and melts out, hence the “lost wax process.” This is accomplished by placing the ceramic covered wax sculpture into a kiln. The shell is hardened and the wax burns or melts out.
  • The negative space of the original artwork remains imprinted in the ceramic shell.
  • Molten bronze is poured into the ceramic shell. After it cools, the shell is then hammered and broken off.
  • Metal fabricators at the bronze foundry take out imperfections in the bronze cast and work it until it is as near a perfect copy of the original as can be done.
  • Chemicals which give patina or coloring are sprayed into the air around the heated bronze, which makes the vision of the artist come alive!

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