Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Adventures in hot metal: Carley Parrish

It's been a week since I accepted Carley Parrish's gracious invitation to stretch my skills and try my hand at casting in her studio. It was a small group at the studio: Carley Parrish, Mike Walsh, Adam Castleforth, and my friend Laurie Trok and myself. I am a complete novice when it comes to this type of medium. Honestly, it was absolutely a wonderful experience. I have not retrieved my experiments yet, but I will follow up with an image of my attempt!

What Carley was concentrating on for the evening was a molten aluminum pour. She was casting in two different types of sand relief and lost wax casting. The sand reliefs were very immediate, and offered an opportunity to experiment with carving or pressing. One sand, for carving, was mixed with something to keep it stable and was good for carving a relief into. It kept marks very well. The other sand was softer and better for taking an imprint. This was where my friend, Laurie Trok, and I were working.

Carley Parrish and Mike Walsh were working with a combination of things. Both had lost wax pieces prepared and both were also preparing sand for casting in relief. Theirs were much more complex, of course, planned as components for later assembly. Mike Walsh was also preparing for an exhibit that opened on December 18 at The Gallery 4.

All in all, it was a rewarding experience. Carley made the process seem much more accessible than I would have thought, bringing a very intuitive approach to a medium that I had always seen as requiring considerable planning. Unfortunately, I had to cut out before the drama of the pour really started. I will, however, be sure to update when the next hot metal pour will be held.

Please take a few minutes to view the slide show. The images are labeled and document the process up to loading the crucible.

Get to know Laurie Trok. I wish I could find some information on Adam Castleforth to share with you along with Laurie's, but I can find no trace in the e-phemeral.

If you want to acquaint yourself with some of Carley Parrish's work, stop by Hermanowski's (1907 Penn Ave) in the Strip District where you can see the impressive Strip Mural. Carley and her husband, Ed Parrish, have brought hot metal to many public events in Pittsburgh and surrounding communities. Their work is always good and their events are filled with fire and energy. Carley includes a number of mediums in her skills, and her work appears in many focused and group presentations. Recently, some of her works were included in the new Irma Freeman Center for Imagination in the exhibit Energy: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

You can definitely get to know Mike Walsh a little better Check out:

Coming Full Circle "20 Years Later"
Recent work by Mike Walsh
The Gallery 4
206 S, Highland Ave, 15206
tues - sat
1pm - 7pm

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