Industrial Tropic

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Transporting the WorkTransporting the WorkBanan Leaf Sculpture,WIPBanan Leaf Sculpture,WIP

These are process shots from my latest effort. this sculpture is intended to embellish a newly refurbished shopping center on the north side of Santa Rosa that is to be called "Palm Square" (thus the tropical theme). There was some communication error about the time constraints. They called me on Jan 15th and said "where's the piece"? I hadn't started it yet.
Anyway,I worked 10 hours a day for 17 days straight and got her done...Clients approved and I got paid.
paint and installation are the contractors responsibility.
The piece is now in the paint shop getting shot with a new nano-prism-technology paint from JD Uniphase that gives rainbow colors as you walk around the piece. There is already a poured in place concrete pedestal 4'x4'x4' to receive the work when it's done in a couple of weeks.

TECHNIQUE:
The leaves were all plasma cut from 3/16ths steel sheet at a local industrial facility. I used a huge 250 ton press break to put a crease down the center of each of the large leaves which weigh about 100 lbs apiece.The edge cuts were done in my studio with the hand held plasma cutter. I then made a jig to bend each leaf cross ways where the side cuts meet. I had to use heat (torch) to assist in making some of the bends but the jig I made worked fairly well. The trick is to build a contraption that puts all the leverage and pressure EXACTLY where you want it.Thus you FINESSE the desired shape instead of bludgeoning it into submission,a difficult concept to express but absolutely critical with metal sculpture that is intended to emulate ORGANIC FORMS. The shaft of each leaf is 1 1/4 hardened hex bar.I think it has vanadium in it. The shafts were forged into a taper to fit within a slot I cut in each leaf,then welded on both sides. The base plate is 5/8ths steel plate and each leaf shaft goes THROUGH the plate and is welded on BOTH SIDES(very important) The base plate has three holes for mounting to the pre-cast pedestal with three 1" grade 8 bolts...

The city of Santa Rosa has a new ordinance that requires 1% of all new construction and retrofits be devoted to Art.Thus there finally exists the political will to legislate the visual transformation of the City and give it a new artistic identity...