Caroline Wilkinson, an anthropologist from Manchester has reconstructed the face of St. Nicholas from images taken of his remains during the 1950's.
Forensic reconstructions do not normally include the artistic nuances which a sculptor might use in making a portrait. Interestingly, the researchers studied painted images of the saint to help with the final appearance.
The reconstruction revealed that he had a severely broken nose. Can't help wondering if this injury was a result of his altercation with Aruis - we can only conject!
Santa makes an appearance
When Fr. D brought his statue of St. Patrick for customisation, changing the face to resemble what forensics revealed would have been a major issue... as in giving him a brand new head!
We decided to change the book and the beard, not to mention dispensing with the shamrock!
He was completed in time for his feast day on 6th December, and now resides in a school of the same name .
When parts of a statue are missing, I always sculpt a new replacement part to ensure that it is modelled to the correct style and proportions of the statue. In this way the the figure retains its original aesthetic.
So, this week I have been preparing a clay model for the replacement - (Photos below) and hope to make the mould and cast it by the weekend.
As we will be making the sceptre too, the statue should be complete within a couple of weeks, when I will post the results of the completed restoration.
Above: Three views of the clay hand, to the right it holds a modelling tool which is the correct diameter for the sceptre.
Since writing this post, we visited the area where the statue was to be displayed, and it was decided that the statue would hold a rosary rather than a sceptre.
So I have since made some adjustments to the model of the hand, and it will soon be ready to cast.
as though she was teetering on the edge, preparing to jump.
Fr. S wanted to find something more fitting to help with devotions in his church. Providentially, the answer to this problem came as a commission for us to produce a new statue of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament.
Having seen the Marian shrine of my childhood church in Liverpool relegated to a meeting room, (during re-ordering in the 70's) I am grateful to Fr. S for having considered me for this work, and to have been part of re-instating devotion to her. It helped to heal that former sense of loss, to know that devotion to Mary would be shared again.
With all the parts for our statue of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament now cast, we will wait for them to dry out, and then smooth out any fins.
"Fins" are the seamline areas of the mould, which appear on all cast works.
Once this has been completed the parts of the statue can be assembled and painted.
There were some unavoidable delays in the progress of this figure, but we are now back on track and hope to have it ready for May.
I am looking forward to seeing it painted up and installed for the place it was intended.
I hope to post again soon with images of the completed statue.
Liturgical artist/restorer. Bachelor of Art and Design, Catholic Blogger
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