When most people think of sculpture they picture enormous marble nudes, used as the centerpieces in public fountains or displayed in a museum. Few consider that a sculpture can be of diminutive proportions as well as gigantic ones, and everything in between.
Sculptures can be part of a relief, set into any part of a building. A unique relief sculpture might be used to grace a front door of the couple's home, or have an honored place in their garden or bath.
A freestanding sculpture is any piece that is carved or modeled all the way around. Sculptors use many processes to create their art, but the two most common are modeling and carving.
Modeling sculptures are those which are added to - they generally start as plaster, clay, or wax, and the sculptor adds to them as needed to create the piece. After the sculpture's artistic creation is complete, it is placed within a heat resistant cast. Once the cast has dried around the artwork, molten metal, plastic, or cement replaces the less durable modeling medium to complete the project.
Carving a sculpture requires taking away from a solid block, generally stone, and using a chisel to cut away small pieces to eventually produce a freestanding sculpture. It is the opposite of modeling, and due to the inherent resistance of the medium used, it is much more difficult to produce outstanding results.
Carvings can be made out of wood; however, stone is the favored medium for most sculptors. Stones used include:
- Granite: very hard, comes in gray, black, brown, red, green and bluish gray.
- Limestone: soft, gray.
- Sandstone: soft, buff or red brown and gray.
- Marble: medium to hard, comes in white, gray, green, red, and black.
- Soapstone: soft, gray or black in color.
- Alabaster: very soft, comes in white, gray, beige, orange, yellow, red and
- translucent. Often used for smaller carvings.
27th anniversary gift ideas might include a carved vase, carved bookends, a pair of modeled masks, or a piece for the couple's garden or mantle. Your gift might also move completely away from the static way we traditionally think of sculpture and into an area affected by nature and movement.
Sculpture can take many forms. When considering it for an anniversary gift, reflect upon the following contemporary options:
- Bonsai Tree: a miniature living sculpture that will change over the years as your gift recipients model its growth.
- Wind Sculptures: made of copper, chrome and or crystal, which change with the wind.
- Totem poles: Native Americans and Eskimos have carved these unique story-telling sculptures for centuries and they can be found in many different sizes for indoor or outdoor enjoyment.