How Artist Metrov Creates His 3D Printed Bronze Sculpture: Reincarnation of Pax

This week, we congratulated Santa Barbara, California artist Metrov on the sale of one of his 3D printed sculptures here. We are very pleased to be able to also share this article, sent to us by Metrov, containing full details on how he created his limited edition sculpture series using the latest 3D printing technology.

3Dmodel

The Reincarnation of PAX by Metrov (www.metrov.org)

The introduction of new casting technologies led me on quite an adventure this last year. Basically, it was supposed to go something like this: 1) Use a 3D modeling program to create a digital sculpture. 2) Email the digital file to a foundry. 3) Foundry makes a 3D print. 4) From the 3D print, they make a mold. 5) From the mold, they cast the sculpture in bronze. 6) Add patinas to bronze. 7) The bronze is mounted on a marble stand. 8) Foundry ships finished piece to my studio in U.S. The real adventure, however, happened between the lines.

STEP ONE: CREATE 3D MODEL

Below: image of PAX: BEAR GODDESS (with foundry notes), rendered from Blender, an open source, 3D modeling and animation program. It took me a few years to master Blender… the basics, anyway. It’s a fully comprehensive program which includes all the myriad controls of the high-end paid versions.

STEP TWO: EMAIL DIGITAL FILE TO FOUNDRY

Sounds simple, but first I had to hire a professional 3D modeller to prepare my digital file for 3D printing. Besides modeling the figure, it has to be specially configured to enable 3D printing—technical stuff I’ve yet to learn (read: don’t want to learn… ugh). Also, the file had to go to a foundry in China as their prices are a fraction of what the cost would be in the U.S. Some places in China are not email friendly, and so emails have to be sent through special servers, otherwise they may be intercepted by secret police… or spies… or something. Anyway, the email finally arrived at the foundry.

STEP THREE: FOUNDRY MAKES 3D PRINT

This step was happily straightforward. My well-prepared file printed without issues. Below: image of the 3D print.

3dprint

STEP FOUR: FOUNDRY MAKES MOLD

Again, this step was pretty straightforward. Or at least, I didn’t hear of any issues.

STEP FIVE: CAST SCULPTURE IN BRONZE

Casting went well… after all, this is what foundries, do, right?

STEP SIX: ADD PATINAS TO BRONZE

This is where the headaches began. This particular sculpture requires a two-tone patina as seen in the first rendering above. Most of the patina is the traditional bronze color that covers the body and ears, but the head and ear holes must be black. After numerous attempts (and photos back and forth showing wear corrections must be made, etc), the artisans at the foundry were simply unable to create the patina as indicated. When they tried to fix it, they only made things worse. Exasperated, I finally instructed them to remove the patina completely and send it without a finish. (see 3rd shot below).

Head_2up

flub2

clean

STEP SEVEN: MOUNT BRONZE ON MARBLE STAND

The first marble base made by the foundry was nothing like the one I designed in my rendering. When I pointed this out to them (based on the photo they sent), they readily had another one made. Second time they got it right.

STEP EIGHT: SHIP FINISHED PIECE

The work in the image above is what arrived from China. I was pretty excited to receive my sculpture at last… it took almost eight months from the time I’d emailed the 3D digital file to get the final statue. It wouldn’t normally take this long, of course, but the patina phase became a nightmare that no one anticipated. It was my fault, actually, as I failed, in the beginning, to ask the foundry to show me a similar two-tone patina sculpture they’d done in the past.

So, I now had to have the patina applied. Since this part of the operation requires a welding torch, and because I’d never applied patina before, I went to a local foundry to have it done.

The local foundry is well established: Artisan Bronze in Oxnard, California. Because of the headaches working with China, I decided to have a mold made from the bronze so I could have Artisan Bronze make copies in the future. Because the 3D print is not required to make bronze copies, the cost is considerably reduced. Robert, the owner, agreed, but the marble base had to be removed to make the mold. Robert warned me it could break when trying to remove it…. which, in fact, it summarily did.

Robert added both colors of the patina, but the blacks did not turn out nearly black enough. I learned that it’s not possible to get a true black patina. The black would have to be painted on.

First, though, I had to replace the marble base. Robert recommended a place he works with in Los Angeles: Imported Onyx. He actually drove my base down to them, and left it for replication. When I called to pick the new base, there was no answer… for almost two weeks.

Meanwhile, I had posted the 3D rendering of the statue on Indiewalls, a website where artists can submit their work for various commercial and private needs, i.e. restaurants, hotels, homes, and so forth. A client actually purchased the statue based on the rendering, and needed it shipped to New York right away!

I found another base factory on the East Coast, and was about to place an order when, Victor, owner of Imported Onyx called and apologized as he’d been waylaid by surgery. At any rate, he turned out to be a great guy, and fabricated a new base in one day. I raced down from Santa Barbara to pick it up.

Having the mounted statue back in my studio, I had to apply the final black paint for the head and ear holes. I painstakingly masked off the bronze areas and applied the paint on Friday. Saturday was spent photographing and making video of the final work. Sunday, I prepared the packing crate. Monday, I ordered a plaque with title of piece and my name. Monday night, packed the work. Tues morning, drove the crate to FEDEX and had it shipped to NYC!

Since this version of PAX is a limited edition of 25, I only have to go through this 24 more times! Just kidding. Now that I’ve been through the process… and learned the potholes to avoid… it should be a snap making the other editions. At any rate, keep your fingers crossed for me.

 

MYTH OF PAX: BEAR GODDESS

In this epic, narrative installation series, Pax, the ancient Roman goddess of peace, Spring, and re-birth, returns to us as the spirit of a Mother Bear. The Pax project signals the arrival of a new global consciousness; a harmonious shift between the balance of patriarchal and matriarchal forces governing our planet. 

IMG_7115

LEARN MORE ABOUT “PAX: BEAR GODDESS LIMITED EDITION SCULPTURE

Advertisements

Made in Hungary: Ildikó Kalapács, Featured Flootie Artist of the Week

Made In Hungary, Ildiko K

Made In Hungary, Ildiko Kalapacs

 

Ildikó Kalapács is a Hungarian-American visual artist living in Washington state. Her richly layered works, such as her self-portrait, Made In Hungary, reflect her personal explorations of identity through the cultural diversity of her life experiences, and her interest in body language, gender roles, and the human condition.

Time, Ildiko Ka

Time, Ildiko Kalapacs

In addition to her paintings, Ildiko creates three-dimensional art– mostly ceramic works, with some mixed media and bronze pieces. 
Digital, Ildiko Kalapacs

Digital, Ildiko Kalapacs

Her public art project, The Bearing Public Sculpture Project, in Spokane, Washington, is a life-size bronze sculpture depicting a woman carrying a man in a basket balanced on her head. The man in the basket is holding a military rifle. The work is meant to be a thought-provoking metaphor for the strength of the human spirit under the weight of war. The sculpture has the partial funding of a grant from the Puffin Foundation, but more funding is still needed to complete the project.

View more of Ildiko’s paintings and sculpture in her Flootie portfolio here.
Watch a video interview of Ildikó Kalapács with Dean Cameron, host of Flootie TV, Episode 3:

blogheaderflootiedotcom

Public Artists Website: Provides Artists Interested in Public Art with Opportunites / RFQ (Request for Qualifications)

Artist may sign up free on the Public Artists website www.PublicArtist.org.   Once you have your account set up you may select options to receive email notifications for opportunities. You can select local, national or international opportunities, and also–

Select the types of projects and media for which you would like to be considered.

 Architectural Arts
Bronze
Ceramics
Glass
Kinetic
Landscape
Light
Metal
Mixed Media
Mosaic
Multimedia
 Murals
Painting
Photography
Reclaimed/Found Objects
Sculpture
Sound
Stainless Steel
Stone
Textile/Fiber
Water
Weathering Steel

On the PublicArtist site you can search for public art projects that require electronic submissions.

If you are an artist interested in getting a public art contract, below is a sample of a current RFQ or Request for Qualifications, the first step of the process. To submit to a public art project RFQ, you are not expected to provide your completed art proposal, but rather a statement of interest in the project, including your general approach and experience working on comparable projects in regard to size, scope, and budget (1,000 words maximum). This statement should take the form of a description of the process from design through finished installation rather than that of a specific design proposal. Include Up to ten images of previously completed work relevant to the project.

blogPublicArt

PUBLIC ART OPPORTUNITY for GE AVIATION – ASHEVILLE, North Carolina  REQUEST FOR QUALIFICATIONS (RFQ)  announcement date: August 4, 2014

OVERVIEW

Budget:  $40,000.00

Eligibility:  North Carolina Artists

Submission Deadline:  Friday, August 29  5:00 PM EST

Installation:  Spring 2015

PROJECT AND SITE DESCRIPTION

GE Aviation – Asheville, a global leader in jet engine and aircraft system production, seeks to commission an aviation inspired piece of public art to be installed at the entrance of its newly built advanced composites factory located at 502 Sweeten Creek Industrial Park, Asheville, NC 28803. This 170,000-square-foot facility will be the first in the world to mass-produce engine components made of advanced ceramic matrix composite materials.

GE Aviation – Asheville is a world-leading provider of jet and turboprop engines, components and integrated systems for commercial, military, business, and general aviation aircraft, and ship propulsion applications. A jet engine specific reference is desirable, but not required.

ELIGIBILITY  This opportunity is open to any artist or artist team living and working in North Carolina. Preference will be given to artists living in the 23 counties of western North Carolina.

SCOPE OF WORK

The piece will be installed outdoors in a 10’ by 10’ square space (vertical dimension flexible) near the entrance of the building. Any necessary footings or site preparations will be the responsibility of the artist

Climate, maintenance, safety, and durability must be addressed in the design. Vehicular and pedestrian traffic must also be considered. Incorporating green practices or materials is desirable. ! The finished piece will require little to no regular maintenance. The selected artist will be expected to collaborate! with all necessary parties for the successful installation of the piece.!

PROJECT SCHEDULE

Friday, August 29 Submission of qualifications due by 5 PM EST
Friday, September 5 Notification of finalists
Friday, September 19 Selection committee interviews
Friday, September 26! !Notify selected artist
Wednesday, October 15! !Presentation by artist at grand opening
Spring 2015! !Installation of completed artwork!
SELECTION PROCESS

Up to three finalists will be selected directly from the initially submitted RFQ applications to present detailed proposals. From the pool of interviewed finalists, the selection committee will commission one piece.

A selection committee of five to seven members, including an artist or public art professional, and at least four GE Aviation – Asheville representatives will review submissions and award the contract. Plato! Strategies, a public art consulting firm, will facilitate the selection process.

SELECTION CRITERIA

Professional qualifications

Previous experience in design, production, and installation of public art.

Approach to the project,  articulated in the statement of interest. Appropriate facility and technical capabilities for design, production,  and installation!

  • Demonstrated ability to work within a budget and meet deadlines

SUBMISSION DEADLINE

Friday, August 29, 2014 by 5:00 PM. To ensure fairness to all, there are no extensions or waivers of deadlines.

SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS

Responses to this RFQ will only be accepted electronically at www.PublicArtist.org. If you aren’t a member you will be asked to set up a free account. From there you can search for this project and related planning documents. Mailed or hand delivered hardcopy packets, videos, or optical media will not be accepted.

Once logged in to the application site you will be asked to submit the following information:

‣ Artist(s) name(s), name of business, mailing address, phone number(s), email, website.

Artist’s bio

  • A statement of interest in this project, including general approach and experience working on comparable projects in regard to size, scope, and budget (1,000 words maximum). This statement should take the form of a description of the process from design through finished installation rather than that of a specific design proposal.

Up to ten images of previously completed work relevant to this project.

A resume (two pages maximum) for each team member highlighting professional accomplishments.

  • A list of three professional references with contact information: name, title and affiliation, phone number, and email address. References should be able to speak to your ability to provide services for a public art project of similar size and scope.!

Any proposed design accompanying this RFQ submission is optional.

FINALISTS

Each finalist will receive $1,000 to cover costs to present their concept to the selection committee. This amount is intended to cover all phases of research, concept development, and associated costs

including travel, materials, samples, and models.

Interviews with the selection committee are scheduled for Friday, September 19, at the GE Aviation – Asheville offices.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

This project is managed by GE Aviation – Asheville, under contract with Plato Strategies.

All correspondence and communications by and between applicants and members of the selection

committee should be directed to: Geraldine Plato http://www.PLATOstrategies.com  email: geraldine@PLATOstrategies.com

Discussion regarding this project, by and between any applicant and any member of the selection committee outside of regularly scheduled meetings during the selection process may be grounds for the disqualification of the applicant. Such determination shall be at the discretion of GE Aviation – Asheville.

The commissioning of an artist or artists by GE Aviation – Asheville and the pursuit of all GE Aviation – Asheville activities are implemented without preference to racial or ethnic origins, gender, sexual

orientation, religious affiliation, disability, or age.

GE Aviation – Asheville reserves the following rights:

‣ to modify this solicitation and to request additional information from participating artists

  to reject any or all applications or proposals, to reject any finalist, to waive informalities in applications or proposals, or to terminate the selection process for any project without prior notice!

  • to make selections from invited artists in addition to submitted applications or in the event that insufficient or inappropriate applications are received.
  • to terminate any project prior to the commission of the work when the termination would be in the best interest of the project.

The selected artist(s) will enter into a contract with GE Aviation – Asheville. A copy of the provisions of the contract is available upon request.

Artists retain all rights of copyrighted materials submitted, except as limited by this section. By submitting to this RFQ those artist(s) responding to this prospectus agree to a copyright release for controlled usage of the submitted materials for committee distribution, GE Aviation – Asheville, shall not! be responsible for any third party infringement of artists’ copyrights.

INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS

The chosen artist will be required to provide certification of:

GE Aviation – Asheville requires that the final approved contract for professional services specify that the selected artist(s) shall maintain at all times during the term of the contract, at its sole expense:

Statutory workers’ compensation in accordance with the laws of the state where such compensation would be payable. Employers’ liability (Coverage B) with limits of not less than $500,000 per accident. Automobile liability insurance on any owned, non-owned or rented vehicle with limits of at least $1,000,000 per occurrence combined single limit bodily injury and property damage. Comprehensive general liability, including products liability, completed operations liability, blanket contractual liability, broad form property damage and personal injury liability insurance with limits of at least $1,000,000 per occurrence combined single limit. Professional services liability for a limit of not less than $1,000,000 per occurrence. Visual artists cannot obtain professional liability insurance; however, in the event that services delivered as a part of this agreement require professional services by a subcontractor of the ARTISTS, Professional Liability, Errors and Omissions coverage shall be provided by the subcontractor. “Professional Services”, for the purposes of this agreement section shall mean any services provided by a licensed professional, such as structural review or engineering. The subcontractor of the ARTISTS shall provide a certificate of insurance to ARTISTS as to proof of Professional Liability Insurance.

GE Aviation – Asheville shall be named as additional insured and be provided with a certificate of insurance prior to the effective date of the contract or any renewal contract. GE Aviation – Asheville shall be provided with all renewal certificates within 30 days of the expiration date of any and all policies listed on the certificate of insurance.