Winged dog cast

90PICT3053The first cast from the new mold

It took 100# of cast stone and almost 5 gallons of water to fill the mold, after the cast was hollowed out and dried he weighs 90#  The first cast is for myself, I also need to cast one solid, and with the “shims” left intact, as a “master” for future mold making since the original clay model has been damaged.

I cast a concrete cast today for a client in Nashville for his building restoration/renovation, that one is to sit on top of a now closed off chimney. It took 100# of sand and about 40# of Portland cement to cast that one, unfortunately at 140# give or take, plus about 40# for the wood crate, he will exceed the weight limit for FedEx ground and will have to ship by truck.

After he sits in the mold for a couple of days, on Monday I can take him out and see how the cast turned out. I also need to drill a hole up into the base for a stainless steel rod which will be used to help secure the sculpture to the top of the chimney through a hole for the rod to slide into.

I almost finished the model for the “Butterfly child” today, only the face needs to be worked on now to finish it (other than some minor cleanup and the like) I plan to have the model finished if not tomorrow, then this week so I can make the mold before next weekend, probably Thursday I’ll be working on that since I plan to not let the model dry out before molding it, that will also retain the size a bit more but mostly it just needs to get done!

The toes on the original 1906 sculpture number and odd three per paw as my model does too, why three toes? I have a theory that the original artist decided to accentuate the strength of the claws and toes to give it strength and power, that’s supported in part too by the muscles in the forelegs, the massive power of the paws are the first thing that draws the eye on this, to fit four toes on each paw they would have had to have been modelled smaller, and closer together, the impact of that would have been significantly reduced.

I searched for what the design might be called in mythology, closest I could find to this is a winged dog in Armenian mythology called an Aralez. It’s almost certain with the waves of immigrants from Europe, Ukraine, Armenia etc in the 19th century that they would have worked in a terracotta factory such as the one that made these and influenced the designs.
It’s not a griffin or a winged lion, a winged lioness would be doubtfull.

Here’s a drawing of such an Aralez, of course this is an artist interpretation, but following the mythology it’s a large, strong  dog with wings depicted on the battlefield: