Q & A Fridays: Installing Heavy Sculptures

How on earth are you going to get that two-and-a-half ton marble sculpture into the church? Reprinted from October 25, 2006. Very carefully, my friends! First, you call on your pals at Canal Street Studios. How many people does it take to move a two-ton sculpture of the Blessed Virgin out of the studio, into…

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My Sweet Spot

I had a model out to the studio today for the first time in what feels like forever. It was, and usually is, challenging to position him in just the right way so that his figure had balance, tension, and was not too uncomfortable for. Once we identified the perfect pose, I moved the armature…

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Q & A Fridays: Commissions

What is a commissioned sculpture and how does the process work?  People are most familiar with art that hangs in galleries. The artists creates the work, brings it to the gallery, the gallery promotes it, and the art is sold in the gallery. The gallery takes a percentage of the sale and the rest is…

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Vocations: Mother & Artist, Learning to be Both

Mother When my daughter arrived here from India in 2009, I was elated beyond measure. I felt powerful, woman, incredible. I was so in love, so captivated, so full of light. Then I spiraled into a deep, black place. Postpartum depression is not just something biological mothers face. On my way down, I saw all the ways…

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The Holdup

The thing standing between me and my saw: I’ve had the saw so long that the old battery just doesn’t work any more. I sent the hubs to Home Depot to pick up a Lithium Ion Battery last week. Then I realized that I also needed a Lithium Ion charger to go with it. The…

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Nine Tons of Marble

This weekend in 2004, I imported nine tons of marble from Carrara, Italy. It would become the Virgin Annunciate. Even eight years later, it’s still incredible. ——————- Sarah Hempel Irani, Sculptor www.HempelStudios.com info@hempelstudios.com

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Q & A Friday: Clay to Stone

One of the most frequently asked questions I get in the studio is “how do you get this from clay to stone?” It’s a long answer that usually involves me getting out a diagram, an Italian stone carver, and a math textbook to explain it all. So, I thought that I would try to explain it here…

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The Nude and the Christian

An essay I wrote in March, 2011.   As an artist who specializes in figurative sculpture, I have spent countless hours in the studio working with nude models. It is a time-honored practice in the Classical tradition, employed by artists throughout the centuries. Depictions of the nude are an important aspect in understanding the history…

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A Place to Work

I am tentatively settling in here. I have lived in this house for three years now, a remarkably long time for someone who has moved as many times as I have. This is my eleventh city. I have taken a few years of from working in the studio and have re-established it here in Grove…

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How the Studio Got Done, Part I

After nearly a year of searching for a studio in town, I finally decided to work in my own back yard. I have a small cottage with an even smaller one-car garage. Well, it was a one car garage back when cars could fit in a ten-foot wide space. Even my compact Mazda 5 can…

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