Since we have been focused on making the blog more complete, it made sense to upload the older videos straight to the page so our readers don’t have to hop around to see what we do. These videos were produced in the summer of 2013, shortly after moving our studio to the Key Stallion Station, where Gabe and I also work. Here is a tribute to our new home and the potential of our space. This was the beginning of true direction
If you have seen these, I apologize for the recycled content, If not, give them a look. The were shot entirely with cell phones and my camera work leaves much to be desired, but the videos are solid and worth watching.
Finishing the Horse began with research, as usual. What we wanted was a stucco recipe that had both clay and concrete. I know this is a sound practice because I used to mix stucco for my professor Vicky Hansen and she used both, but I could neither remember that recipe or find one on line. We wound up making our own from a recipe I found online that was intended for restoration of historical buildings. While we wanted portland cement in the mix,we were looking for very little. Enough to increase durability on a difficult surface but little enough to avoid the surface becoming brittle and hard to repair. We used these two web pages primarily in our investigations.
We based our recipe off this recipe from the about.com page:
“Materials for Soft Brick Mortar and for Soft Stucco“
5 gallons hydrated lime
10 gallons sand
1 quart white, nonstaining portland cement (1 cup only for pointing)
Water to form a workable mix.
(Koch and Wilson, Architects, New Orleans, Louisiana, February, 1980
To incorporate the clay we replaced half the aggregate (sand) with the unrefined brick clay we acquired for the project.
Refining the mixing process was difficult, eventually we decided to mix half batches because we needed the mix to be rather heavy so it would stick to the underside of the sculpture, also applying the stucco wire was super difficult on such a complex surface so there were spots that were nearly impossible to get the material to adhere. We used straw to help fill in those spots which helped considerably.
Once we had the mix right it was just a whole lot of work to get the piece finished. We applied a second coat to the surface to fill gaps and smooth it a bit a couple days after the first. It was on this second day of stuccoing that we hatched the plan for the video.