Sunday, May 09, 2010

Chasing the Night Away

Taking classes with Gia Gogishvili is something I look forward to every week. We meet at his studio on Saturday afternoons and spend between 4 and 5 hours learning and practicing the art of repousse/chasing. For those of you who aren't familiar with this technique, here is the definition from Wikipedia: Repousse is a metalworking technique in which a malleable metal is ornamented or shaped by hammering from the reverse side. Chasing is the opposite technique to repoussé, and the two are used in conjunction to create a finished piece. It is also known as embossing.

Below are some of the tools used in this technique. No matter how many tools you use, you always need more. That's what Gia tells us. We're also learning how to make these tools ourselves.

This is where we work. It's smart to wear earplugs, because when everyone is hammering at the same time, it can be painful.

Gia is examining Maggie's piece of copper. She's just starting her design, so is chasing the outside lines of the design on a piece of copper which sits on top of a steel plate.

Here some texture is added before moving forward.

Now it's time to start pushing the metal and developing the form.

Here we are getting more defined. We're at a point where we're now beginning to turn the piece over when needed to develop the details.

And this one is just about done. It's probably been flipped 3 times...maybe more. The lines are sharper, the differing heights more defined and all the details are becoming clear. Just a little more definition and it'll be time to remove this from the pitch pot and move on to the next project. Can't wait! I've got my design already lined and am ready to start!