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The Making of the Mold of Carmen

Carmen, a life-sized clay figure sculpted by Evelyn Floret, was too heavy to move, weighing 500 pounds. The plaster piece mold had to be made in the studio. This process took eight hours of intensive work by three and, then, four men, all from Ranieri Sculpture Casting.

They placed metallic shims on the sides of the clay figure to define the centerline. Then they dripped wet plaster onto the piece, one layer at a time, allowing each layer to dry before splashing on more. They wrapped the figure with plaster-soaked clothes. Finally they shaped rods and rails to the curve of the figure to brace and strengthen the plaster. By then, they had created what looked like a mummy weighing about 150 fifty pounds.

Once they cracked open the dried mold along the shim line, it took the strength of four men to separate the two sides. Only one sculpture could be cast from this piece mold. The plaster mold was taken to the foundry to cure. Then bronze powder and fiberglass were layered inside the mold. When the mold was finally removed, Carmen was reborn in the form of a bonded bronze.