Friday, January 22, 2010

Samuel and The Whale

In recapping some of the highlights of 2009, we'd like to recognize a very talented artist and dear friend, Jim Sardonis. Jim and his work were prominent in the shop during the year long preparation for the "mergefest" and he was privy to the various ups and downs and ins and outs of that time in our lives. Thanks Jim for being our witness to "the process"
You can see more of Jim's work by going to Our Favorite Links on right.

The first project Jim brought in was a 14 inch clay macquette that was to be enlarged to an over life size figure and cast in bronze. It was the figure of Samuel de Champlain in honor of the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial celebrations to be installed at Champlain College.
Vicky (the pantograph) was set up and a wood and steel armature to hold they clay was made to scale.

This is the rough clay work in progress. Once completed the enlargement was delivered to Jim's studio in Randolph for him to finish the final surface.

After casting Sam in nine pieces, he was fit back together and welded into place.

Finally Mr. Champlain is starting to look like himself again. Now the bronze is ready for a liver of sulpfur and cupric nitrate hot patina.

After the patina is finish and Sam is waxed, he travels to Granite Importers in Barre to be mounted on the finished pedestal.

Let the unveiling begin!
Nice technique Jim.

The reception after was fabulous and we were able to meet and dine with Dr. David Hackett Fischer , the author of "Champlain's Dream" a fascinating book describing the complete history of Samuel's arrival to this region. It was a wonderful and well attended event!

Next Jim was commisioned to enlarge one of his infamous whale tails for a private residence in Rumson New Jersey. Many of you may have spotted the two large granite tails of Jim's in Burlington Vermont.

Vicky was set up again with a new ratio to get points from
the maquette for the enlargement.
Here is the wood and steel armature before the claywork.

After the pieces were cast, welded together and chased,
the patina begins.
This is the finished piece installed in the front lawn of a magnificent home. Nice!

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