Last winter a client approached us with an exciting project: creating a large-scale garden sculpture for their yard. Earlier this spring Kyle and a couple assistants installed the completed project. The sculptural screen is forged steel with a rust patina finish. The design was inspired by the curving paths and curling bark of the trees in the client's garden.
One of the first steps in a project of this scope is to create a mock-up or test piece. My foot is included to show the scale of the material for this piece. The stock is quite a bit heavier than we usually use!
The design incorporates upsetting on the 6' posts. Upsetting is a forging technique that involves bringing the material back down on itself to make it larger than the original stock. Usually we can accomplish this technique closer to the ground, but in this case the height required climbing a ladder to get the best results.
The completed posts with a quarter shown for scale.
Next we shaped the horizontal curved pieces, then clamped them in place on the screen. Once all the pieces were locked in, we used a torch to cut them to varying lengths, creating a sense of rhythm and balance.
A few detail shots of the sculptural screen before installation to show the rich texture and dimension.