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Bruce Papitto

Bruce Papitto

Phone: 510-558-8317

Artist Statement

My figure sculptures are about bonds: bonds to each other, to ideals, to demands of family. The sculptures try to communicate the challenge of preserving these bonds and meeting these demands, all while maintaining a “sense of self". They try to embody the aspect of life as a continuous balancing act. The figures are often in action. The physical motion adds to the aliveness of the figures and lends an urgency.

The sculptures grow out of the many free sketches I make, daily, in pencil or charcoal.  The sketches which interest me the most become references for the sculptures. These I model in clay, usually terra cotta, using traditional techniques. I then fire them in my studio kiln. I also may cast them in bronze or make castings in poly-chromed Ultracal (an industrial-grade plaster) in which case I take them through a mold-making and casting process. To maintain control of the sculpture I do as much of the casting work as I can myself. Casting sculpture in bronze particularly allows me the freedom to design works that evoke movement or which play with balance... elements that enliven my figures and help them speak with an immediacy and intimacy.

I began making figure sculpture over 25 years ago and have a large and still growing body of work.
In addition to "gallery" work, I have created 3 permanent large-scale public sculptures in bronze. A 9 foot tall Revolutionary War Minuteman, “The Patriot”, in Bedford, Massachusetts is racing toward the battle at the Concord Bridge; my “U.S. Senator John Chafee” portrait-figure strides towards the Narragansett Bay in Bristol, Rhode Island; the first casting of “The Bell Keepers” leans into a storm in Alameda, New Mexico while a second casting has made its way into the collection of Benson Sculpture Garden in Loveland, Colorado. These permanent public sculptures establish the value of all my sculpture and ensure that it's value will increase over time.



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