What is the course about?
This course is an introduction to a variety of surface finishes on bisque fired clay and plaster. The course explores and discusses a variety of historical & contemporary sculptors used the surface finish as an integral element of their sculpture.
You will be encouraged to look at your current practice of surface finish on sculptural form and how this could be developed. Through guidance you will be encourage to take an experimental approach to generate a variety of surface qualities using oxides; bronze powder; or shellac and pigments, graphite, inks, acrylic or oil paint or waxes. This will enable you to develop potential original surfaces and advance your sculptural practice.
You are encouraged to bring along small bisque fired clay or plaster sculpture to work with in the final week.
There will be a background presentations, practical demonstrations, group discussions and opportunities for working alone and in collaboration.
What will we cover?
• Brief introduction how artists use the surface finish as an integral part of the finished artwork.
• How to make clay & plaster test tiles to experiment with.
• Introduction to various mediums, methods & techniques to achieve a variety of creative surface finishes.
• How to write meaningful records of the experiments, analyse results and problem solving.
• Encourage the student to make critical decisions, making skills in relation to their own artwork and self-expression, as a member of the class/group.
• Introduce to H & S issues & procedures of materials used within the course, including good practice within the sculpture studio.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Name and illustrate different ways to create surface finishes using a variety of different mediums and techniques on bisque fired clay and/or plaster
• Understand and demonstrate how to make and analyse the results of experimentation, medium/s and techniques used to develop your practice.
• Demonstrate how to work independently & make aesthetic judgement to develop potential original surfaces and advance your sculptural practice.
• Name3 artists and their sculptural practice regarding surface finishes.
• Have a basic awareness of H & S practice of materials and tools used and within the sculpture workshop with due regard to self and others.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions to support demonstrations, hand-outs and for
health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion. You should be able to use
numbers and be able to do simple measurements and calculations.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
You will learn through practical demonstrations, group and individual discussions and tutorials, slide lectures and
personal tuition. Research homework is encouraged to get the most from the course, however, this is optional.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
ONE small clay or plaster sculpture [optional], a sketch/notebook and a camera.
Please wear STURDY shoes in the sculpture department .
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
The sculpture department offers a programme of courses that will allow you to progress from beginner to advanced
as well as learn a range of techniques. For example, we offer a number of courses that concentrate on modelling
from the figure: VU792 or Sculpture inspired by Giacometti -VU969; while the Build Sculpture course will help you to build an individual sculpture practice. Sculpture studio: develop personal work (VU983) offers broad scope for development or you could join specific specialist courses like Carving in wood or stone (VU805) to further your skills. Please ask your tutor for advice.
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details