rebirth of figurative sculpture

Posted by & filed under bronze figurative sculpture, lost-wax method.

In a time where we collectively esteem speed, efficiency, and automation above all else, it’s refreshing to know that there are still areas in which time, patience and originality are still valued. One of these areas is in the world of fine art, and specifically, in bronze figurative sculpture.


Richard MacDonald is considered by many to be the worlds’ preeminent living figurative sculptor. His painstaking attention to detail in his creations means years’ worth of diligent work to create a masterwork out of clay. Once finished, the original clay undergoes the lost-wax casting process, which in the end, reveals a bronze sculpture.


His bronze figurative sculptures can be viewed in galleries around the world, and what is even more noteworthy is that figurative sculpture had been all but lost as a practiced art form in this country and Richard MacDonald was part of the movement which brought it back to life.


Being classically trained as a painter and illustrator, it wasn’t until the 1980’s Richard went about rediscovering figurative sculpture using the ancient lost-wax process of casting bronze. The process of lost-wax casting is favored because of the ability to replicate the detail and for its durability. The process can be seen as early as 3700 BC with the oldest of these artifacts found in South Asia. Bronze statues and other creations using the lost-wax method can be found dating back into antiquity on four of the seven continents.


Richard sold his first bronze to HR Prince Faisal of Saudi Arabia and in 1988 he had his first exhibition as a sculptor. Since then, Richard has continued to create masterpiece after masterpiece pulling inspiration from the triumph of the human spirit – from the circus to the ballet, from the gymnast to the golfer.


Not only is Richard part of the movement which resurrected figurative art sculpture in this country, he has sold thousands of pieces throughout the world – proving that bronze figurative sculpture remains a treasured and celebrated art form in all cultures and all languages.


Regardless of how advanced our technology becomes, there will always be a place for fine art. Richard’s art is a refreshment for our computer-screen weary eyes and reminds us all that timeless art is still being created and won’t become obsolete with the next software update.


To own a bronze figurative sculpture means investing in a masterpiece which will continue to awe and inspire generations to come.