Zoom material : Steel

Posted by Philippe BUIL on


Today, I want to introduce you to one of my favorite materials: steel.

Before working with it in an artistic way, I knew it in the industrial world, working in fields such as foundry, metalwork, cutlery, forge...

I often compare steel to a fiery Camargue horse compared to a draught horse which is similar to bronze.

For my creations, I chose to realize a lace of metal thanks to a technique of dripping.

Metal dripping
To speak of Dripping in sculpture without falling into a flow of paint on a three-dimensional support seems to be a challenge. An action and a project that seems to be a challenge or a gamble.
But observing closely, I melt the metal and it drips out to give a random shape.  The participation of the whole body is present and not only the intellect. Then the paradox can be glimpsed, one feels the curtain rise and it reveals itself a solution to this alternative.
Dripping, as Jackson Pollock liked it, is an access to an unconscious memory, buried in the body, archetypal. A divine evanescent chance put in light and in form.
The internalized projection, classical or abstract, then in the sand, frozen in the space of the mold, receives by fusion, liquefaction, the drops one after the other. The loss of control and access to another dimension are the key words of the discourse, of a communication between the sculpture and the sculptor.
Alchemy is not far away: « ora et labora ». The emerald table says: "you will separate the subtle from the thick with great engineering ... it ascends from the earth to heaven, and again it descends to the earth, and receives strength from things above and below."
The hollows and bumps, the empty and full, the accidents create a play between light and shadow. This lace is a suggestive creation that appeals to the idyllic, chimerical, archetypal, or obscure, black history of each individual. A personal story regenerates itself, recomposing the work. It reinvents its own history like an alluvium dragged by the current of the river, of life. It transforms in an infinitesimal or radical way, the individual I of the creator and the spectator in a new revisited.
Our personal history, real or told cognitive memories, is reconstructed with each frozen drop of eternity.  But through our eyes, the laces become soluble in our personal history, which is endless, unlike the tales whose end is known. Even death, however inedible, will not be able to get the better of our personal stories told in intimacy or in broad daylight.
This acquired and specific property of never having an end and the power to take a new detour every second, are the source of individual freedom. All recast cognitive histories are the means of reconstruction of one's world, of our world.
Gnostics and agnostics come together as opposites come together. In this forest of real, idyllic, archetypal stories, consciously or unconsciously constructed, the creative role of each one, stimulated by the look and the emotion of a work to finish, makes grow towards a reconquered individual freedom.
Sculptural Dripping can then come to life and inspire other creatives in this voice of the inventive mind.

Metal casting


  I melt the steel bars drop by drop

  in a sand mold.



 Brossage d'une sculpture

  Once the casting is complete, the finishing begins.

  I brush my sculptures to reveal the nuances of the metal.




Some examples of steel sculptures: (click on the pictures to access the complete file)

Trait de lumière 83-21 - Abstract sculpture metal lace steel  Metal lamp 99-21 - Sculpture lamp abstract metal lace steel  Infinity - Sculpture metal sign of infinity steel

 Vanity XCIII - Metal skull sculpture - Philippe Buil  Urban art hand - Hand sculpture on steel lace beam  Crane LXXXVIII - Sculpture vanite metal skull lace steel

Au coeur des feuilles - Sculpture metal heart and steel leaf  Pavarti Barong - Sculpture metal torso man in steel lace  Chart verse 17-59 - Steel chart

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