Making the large scale bronze figuresChina Journal
Each of the large scale figures starts with a small ceramic form. It is scanned and a scaled up version is made in foam. I make many adjustments to this foam armature to accommodate the change in scale, such as lengthening arms, legs and torso, adjusting the neck and head size or direction, moving the arms so that someone could sit in it's lap, etc.
For a couple of weeks Tanya (my assistant) and I build on this armature with plaster, paying careful attention to the subtle curves and textures of the emerging form. When it is complete the form is trucked to the foundry where they cut it up into parts to be cast. The bronze parts are then welded together to make the form again. It takes a lot of care and skill to blend the seams with the original texture.
Early in the morning while the studio is quiet, I find and open the eyes and mouth. When I get it right the figure comes alive and is looking directly at me!