Reclining Nude Concrete Sculpture

Hermes2020

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Approximately life size (length 2 m) poolside sculpture. The sculpture consists of fast set concrete slices joined with 10 mm stainless steel threaded rod and stainless steel nuts. The patination forms naturally and varies from batch to batch when the concrete is mixed. I liked the colours that developed, so decided to leave the concrete in its natural state.

Reclining Nude 3.jpg


Reclining Nude 2.jpg


Reclining Nude 4.jpg
 
That looks a very elaborate and tricky thing to pull off. I like the smooth surface and the patina of the plates. In fits in nicely in the setting, just like a reclining nude should. Good job 👍

Btw. I wouldn't mind living there!
 
The plates that are built up to make a three-dimentional figure could be seen as the vibrations through which the body is experienced.
 
That looks a very elaborate and tricky thing to pull off. I like the smooth surface and the patina of the plates. In fits in nicely in the setting, just like a reclining nude should. Good job 👍

Btw. I wouldn't mind living there!
Thank you, Iain, Yes, it was tricky, in that I was pushing the concrete almost to the limit. I have to point out, though, that I reinforced it with stainless steel mesh. I didn't want to use normal galvanized mesh, because the layers are only 20 mm thick, and will get soaked throughout in heavy rain. I don't believe galvanized steel will survive very long under those conditions.

The house belongs to my daughter. I made the sculpture at her request. I enjoyed solving the engineering and logistical problems along with the aesthetic considerations.

If anyone is interested in the work flow I used, let me know.
 
Wow! Spectacular! This is amazing, and good choice on leaving it natural. Really good choice. It looks so good on the rocks, and it's so impressively crafted. I wish I had a better vocabulary to tell you how awesome this is. ❤️ ❤️ ❤️ ⚡
 
I would be interested to know what material you used for casts. I imagine with the concrete at that thickness, it would need protection from freezing temapartures, the nude would need to be clothed.
 
Amazing! And I too, am glad you left it au naturale. Great job! ❤️
 
I would be interested to know what material you used for casts. I imagine with the concrete at that thickness, it would need protection from freezing temapartures, the nude would need to be clothed.

It is a fast setting concrete formulation used to repair airport runways and suchlike. Working time is only 20 minutes, so one has to work pretty quickly on the larger pieces, since I like to pour each layer in one continuous go to achieve maximum strength. I mix about 4 kg at a time, pour it into the mould starting at one end, set the reinforcing mesh, then mix another few kg and pour while the previous batch is still liquid. The material is rock hard after 60 minutes.

Total weight was just over 80 kg.

The material should be OK in winter; minimum overnight here is only about -5°C.
 
Thanks for the details, Hermes. 20 minutes is quite a time constriction. Could I ask what material was used to make the molds?
 
Thanks for the details, Hermes. 20 minutes is quite a time constriction. Could I ask what material was used to make the molds?

Iain, I think I will prepare a detailed description of my workflow, since there seems to be some interest. Just give me a day or so to get it ready. Until then, I can tell you I used 16 mm MDF as a flat base, into which I drilled 10 mm holes for registration bolts. These bolts ensured that the holes for the threaded rod would be aligned correctly in all the layers. The profiles of the layers that I made in a 3D program called Rhino were printed on A0 size paper that was taped to the MDF board. I then made a "dam" out of 3 mm paper faced foam board, cut into 20 mm strips with a scalpel. The strips were glued to the contour printout with white PVA wood glue, then reinforced with small pieces of wood. I painted the base paper pattern and the 20 mm dam walls with two coats of polyurethane varnish to make them waterproof before pouring in the concrete mix. This worked quite well, and the polyurethane coating prevented the walls and base paper from sticking to the concrete. Of course, it would not have been a good idea to try and hold the concrete directly with the stainless nuts, so I embedded stainless steel fender washers in the holes for the stainless steel threaded rods.

Sorry if this sounds terribly involved and long-winded, but I actually enjoyed solving the many technical problems. I could not find any guidance from anyone on the internet, so I will be only too happy to tell you all my "secrets" if you want to attempt a similar project.
 
Well, thank you for the detailed description. I understand the need to be thorough, so I would be the one to apologise as I made the inquiry, if that makes sense. Anyhow, the mention of foam boards is interesting and certainly useful for future reference. I appreciate you taking the time to elaborate.
 
Terrific sculpture !
Thank you very much for describing your technical methods - It is very interesting !
Cheers,
Patricia
 
Iain, I think I will prepare a detailed description of my workflow, since there seems to be some interest.
You are correct that there is interest :)

That is such an interesting approach/technique, and the outcome is spectacular! So very well and cleverly done!
 
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