Damon Price: Sculptor
Damon is a contemporary figurative sculptor based in the UK, with a passion for conveying energy, tension and movement in his pieces.
Human forms and wildlife feature heavily in his work, and he aims to capture the spirit and essence of each subject he sculpts, employing both clay and the lost wax method.
Damon is self-taught, including researching and building a small-scale foundry for his work.
He sees through his entire creative process from start to finish by not only sculpting, but then moulding, casting, and finally patinating and finishing the pieces himself.
Damon sculpts in both wax and clay.
Both the mediums have different properties, consistencies and textures, and this affects the resulting work.
His wax pieces make the most of the 'lost wax' method, creating one-off sculptures with unique and beautiful surface characteristics. To make it workable, wax must be carefully heated within a certain temperature range. Varying the temperature allows it to change from pliable and plastic—for creating structure—to fully liquid—allowing more coincidental mark-making and the addition of texture.
Working in clay has a different 'feel'. Its soft pliability allows a more immediate, expressive way of working, from the hands directly into the material, allowing spontaneous manipulation and intuitive creation.
Transforming a sculpture into its bronze counterpart is a lengthy and involved process.
With the lost-wax process, the piece is sculpted directly in wax. When completed, a network of vents and 'sprues' (small pipes) are added, so that when casting, the molten bronze can travel efficiently around the mould, and air and fumes can escape.
This whole structure then needs several coats of ceramic-based shell material to create a mould. Firing the shell at a high temperature stabilises the ceramic, and the wax drains out and is discarded—hence the 'lost wax' process. Molten bronze is then poured straight into the resulting mould, giving a truly unique piece.
When working in clay, a mould is made from the original sculpture, and then a wax version cast from this mould. This is then ceramic-shelled and cast in bronze using the method described above.
The raw cast pieces need meticulous cleaning and finishing before the chemical patination process can begin.