Improba Putti Sculpture at Burning Man

Once a year, tens of thousands of people gather in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert to create Black Rock City, a temporary metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression, and self-reliance. They depart one week later, having left no trace whatsoever. This is how Burning Man describes their extraordinary annual community. One of the founders, Marion Goodell, says the ultimate goal is to encourage the culture of creativity.

Improba Putti Sculpture at Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters Metal Effects | Incredible project by Vulfie Munson

With this creativity in mind, the theme for Burning Man 2016 was DaVinci’s Workshop. Vulfie Munson of Olde World Artisans was among a select group of artists from around the world chosen to create a sculpture for the piazza that would symbolize the theme. He had eight months to create his sculpture, which he named “Improba Putti”. The sculpture was to sit atop a plinth box with four bas-relief sculptures on each side. The sculptures could be created out of any materials the artist deemed appropriate.

Vulfie shares that “I wanted to make sculptures with an Italian renaissance flair, showing the evolution of the dark ages into a new age of enlightenment. These sculptures portray mythological beings interacting in a playful (or not so playful way). The sculpture will be a Centauress mischievously taunted by winged putti. The bas-reliefs on the plinth will be of underground scenes depicting caves, stalactites, as well as salamanders and bats.”

He decided it would be best to build the sculpture out of paper mâché using a metal framework as the main reinforcement. He would then paint it to look like a bronze patina sculpture since the cost involved to make it out of bronze itself was out of the question. He started on the bas-relief sculptures first to get a feel for how the paper mâché was going to work in addition to patinating them with Metal Effects patinas.
Bas Relief Scultpure by artist Vulfie Munson with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Burning Man 2016

One of the bas-relief sculptures with Metal Effects patinas.

He then moved onto the big sculpture.

 

Creating a Sculpture for Burning Man 2016 | Improba Putti by artist Vulfie Munson | Modern Masters Blog Feature
Creating a Papier Mache sculpture framework for Burning Man 2016 | Artist: Vulfie Munson | Modern Masters Blog
Papier Mache Sculpture Process by artist Vulfie Munson for Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters
Papier Mache Sculpture with Bronze Patina with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Incredible project by Vulfie Munson for Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters Blog Feature
He was able to work on it everyday, which enabled him to meet his deadline. Transporting such a large piece was an adventure in itself but in the end, the beautiful sculpture had its time in the fiery spotlight of Burning Man.

 

Improba Putti Papier-mâché Sculpture patinated bronze with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Artist Vulfie Munson created this temporary masterpiece for Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters Blog Feature
Plinth Close-up of the Improba Putti Papier-mâché Sculpture patinated bronze with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Artist Vulfie Munson created this temporary masterpiece for Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters Blog Feature
Improba Putti Papier-mâché Sculpture patinated bronze with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Artist Vulfie Munson created this temporary masterpiece for Burning Man 2016 | DaVinci's Workshop Theme | Modern Masters Blog Feature
Here is a part of the piazza. In the center stands the man who represents science and technology and the further you venture away, the closer to the realm of the mythological you are.
Improba Putti Papier-mâché Sculpture patinated bronze with Modern Masters Metal Effects | Artist Vulfie Munson of Olde World Artisans created this masterpiece for Burning Man 2016 | Modern Masters Blog Feature

Vulfie Munson and J. Paloma Glass of Olde World Artisans

 Many thanks to both J. Paloma Glass and Vulfie Munson, partners at Olde World Artisans, for sharing this incredible Metal Effects project with us. It is an extraordinary work of art and we’re honored to share it. In fact, if you’d like to read more about their project (and the installation almost-catastrophe!), head to their Improba Putti Burning Man Sculpture blog post. While at their site, be sure to look around to see more of their work. We’d love to know what you think of the sculpture, so leave a note in the comments!

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Modern Mastery: Dan Buttery

Modern Mastery: Dan Buttery of DB Designs | Modern Masters Blog Feature on Studios with incredible Modern Masters projects

We discovered the beautiful projects of Dan Buttery of Black Lab Metal Fab via his shares on Instagram. Dan owns a welding, woodworking and metal art company in Lewiston, NY, and his custom metal work can be found throughout the United States and Canada, including projects for Hard Rock USA. His work with our Metal Effects is inspiring and we wanted to share his projects with you.

Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Mastery Series on the Modern Masters Blog

Metal Artist Dan Buttery

“I learned a lot from my father,” Dan shares. “My dad was a jack of all trades with wood, metal, and cars. I started doing restorations with vehicles with my father when I was 16. My passion for older cars started when I first saw a car. Working with metal and paint on cars got me involved with what I do today with my metal work. After my father passed from a motorcycle accident, I got more involved with the metal art and picked up a PlasmaCam CNC table. My company is named after my black lab, Chevelle, and we are about doing custom metal or wood work that the customer can’t find anywhere else. I like doing one-off pieces that are personal to the customer and challenge myself to make images come to life out of metal or wood. The studio has done small signs to custom furniture to a custom bar for a brewery.  I’ve been working with metal and wood for over 20 years now. With the various finishes I use beside automotive paint, Modern Masters makes my metal art unique and they last a long time. I’ve used other methods of “rusting” but it doesn’t compare to the uniqueness that Modern Masters offers.

Gallo Restaurant with Entrance Sconces patinated with Metal Effects | Project by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Masters Studio feature

Gallo Restaurant with Metal Effects Patinas on the Exterior Sconces | Project by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Masters Blog Feature

Dan did several exterior lighting commissions for the Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen restaurant with Metal Effects.

What is your most memorable, challenging or rewarding project?

My most memorable project was making a fireplace surround for an electric fireplace for a doctor’s office. I built it from scratch and all I had was a rendering and measurements. To make it unique and movable, I made it in two pieces so it was easy to transport. After building the frame, it was then covered with metal. I used the Modern Masters Rust Patina to give it a high quality finish. I added burned and hot rolled metal to give it more of a medieval look.

Custom built fireplace with Metal Effects Rust Patina by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Masters

What is your top finishing tip?

My top finishing tip is to be unique. There are so many ways to use Modern Masters products to make your work stand out. It’s all about trial and error. But with Modern Masters, it comes out great. I use the Rust Patina product to make the work of art look like an old piece of metal. I dab the Iron Reactive Paint on with a brush to chunk up the look so the new piece of metal looks like a 60 year old piece of metal. With their Copper Reactive Metallic Paint, I like to keep some of the copper paint exposed, so it looks like a piece of copper aging, and not have the whole work be aged.

Pizza Restaurant Sign with Metal Effects Copper Reactive Metallic Paint | Patina Process on the Modern Masters Blog | Project by Dan Butter of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab

Pizza Restaurant Sign after Metal Effects Patinas | Project by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Mastery Blog Series

Metal Effects Patina Close-up. So realistic! Gorgeous work by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Masters Blog

Process of patinating a Pizza restaurant sign with Metal Effects. Incredible!

A metal buffalo head is being rusted with Metal Effects patinas by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Masters Blog Feature

Rusted Metal Buffalo Head for a Doctor's Office Exterior | Modern Masters Metal Effects | Project by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab | Modern Mastery Studio Feature

Incredible rust patina on a custom 5′ metal buffalo head for the exterior of a doctor’s office.

How has Modern Masters enhanced your business?

Modern Masters has more than enhanced my business. It made me more creative and capable of offering different finishes for my metal work. I have used the products in my home, creating a rust wall in my living room that I would never thought I could have done until I was introduced to Metal Effects. I used Metallic Plaster to give my bedroom a look I always wanted after seeing it in a bathroom on the Modern Masters website. I have introduced many of my friends to the products and now they are using them to enhance their businesses. I can’t wait to try out more!

Beautiful patinas by Dan Buttery of DB Designs and Black Lab Metal Fab for a House Address Sign | Modern Masters Metal Effects | Modern Mastery Studio Feature

We hope you’ve enjoyed Dan’s incredible artistry with both metals and patinas! Thank you so much, Dan, for sharing your Modern Masters projects with us and showcasing your incredible finishes. Please head on over to the Black Lab Metal Fab website to see more of his company’s gallery of work and keep up with him on Facebook, too. Of course, catch all his project updates on his fantastic @blacklabmetalfab Instagram account as well. Stay inspired!

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