'The Tempest'

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About 'The Tempest'

Marcus completed “The Tempest” in November of 2014 after working exclusively on the sculpture for two and a half years. “It was the focus of my life every day until its final casting in bronze,” she says. At over eight feet tall, the monumental figure is a large replica of an earlier work.

With its depiction of an idealized male form struggling against the force of a violent storm, “The Tempest” marks a departure from the artist's other work. Whereas most of her figures are serene and peaceful, in harmony with their surroundings, this subject is caught in the midst of an intense physical struggle. The skillful modeling of the subject's tensed muscles and twisted clothing only heightens the sense of drama. “I’ve always wanted to create something on an epic scale,” says Marcus. "This piece felt like the perfect opportunity."


'The Tempest' in progress

The 8' foot figure was cast in bronze utilizing the lost wax method.

  1. Clay: Gwen in her studio, working in 2012 on the original clay version. The bronze maquette is seen in the background. A silicone mold (not shown) was then made in her studio.
  2. Plaster removed: Removal of plaster (the mother mold) from the silicone rubber. The plaster ultimately keeps the form of the rubber mold, with the aluminum that provides extra support to the plaster.
  3. Mold removed: Removal of the rubber mold from the original clay (the clay is destroyed through this process).
  4. Rework wax: The sculpture was moved to the foundry where the wax was poured in the mold. Gwen then reworked the wax. This image is her reworked wax ready for gating, after which wax sprues are attached for an even bronze flow, prior to going into the shell dipping.
  5. Ceramic shell: Sections attached going though the dipping process. These steps were repeated 12 times and must dry between each layer, to encase the waxes in a thick ceramic shell. Once in the kiln, the wax burns out to create a hard ceramic thus the term lost wax method.
  6. Metal pour: Molten bronze being poured into ceramic shell.
  7. Raw metal: Beginning stages of 'The Tempest' in raw metal for assembly and chasing. Raw Metal is shown in assembly and chasing using precision tools to refine and add back the original texture to the sculpture.
  8. Patina: Working on the patina (color) of 'The Tempest', done by multiple layering of chemicals to create a transparent effect of the subtle variations in its overall color.