Three tons of iron transformed into works of art in ‘Meltdown’ at National Casting Center Foundry
ALFRED, NY – The 11th annual “Iron Pour Meltdown” was held at the Alfred University School of Art and Design’s National Casting Center foundry, with Alfred University faculty, students and alumni, along with several visiting artists, casting sculptures from more than 6,000 pounds of melted iron.
The Iron Pour Meltdown was started in 2007 by Coral Penelope Lambert, associate professor of sculpture in the Alfred University School of Art and Design. The annual event attracts faculty, students and artists from around the country, many of whom do not have access to a means of making cast iron sculpture on such a large scale.
School of Art and Design students assisted Lambert in running the foundry’s 10-foot-tall iron furnace, which can melt 600 pounds of iron every 20 minutes.
Joining students participating in the Iron Pour Meltdown were Alfred University alumni Peter Leone (’14, B.F.A., art and design), Sinesa Kukec (’01, M.F.A., ceramic art), Ripley Nichols (’15, B.F.A., art and design) and Hannah Schlisky (’15, B.F.A., art and design). Visiting artists included Kip Jones (Salem Art Work, Toronto, Ontario, Canada) and Zac Ward (Rivers of Steel Arts, Pittsburgh, PA).
Vaughn Randall, professor of sculpture at SUNY Cortland, presented a lecture before the pour began to, according to Lambert, “help students contextualize that they were engaging in a rich tradition of cast iron sculpture.”
Two current Alfred University art and design majors -- senior Shelby Bystrak of Owego, NY, and sophomore Emily Congelli of Tully, NY -- oversaw a cast iron tile workshop for students brought to the event by Rochester artist Olivia Kim.
Artwork created at the event will be on display at the National Casting Center as part of the Alfred University’s end-of-semester Art Walk, Dec. 8 from 4-8 p.m.
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