Sloss Furnaces 

20 32nd St N

Birmingham, AL 35222

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© 2019 design by Feral Fagiola. 

 

 

The National Conference on Contemporary Cast Iron Art and Practices showcases the skills and innovations of individual artists, groups, and industry professionals focusing on (but not limited to) the processes of cast iron as an artistic medium, both in traditional and non-traditional processes.

This year, we offer a broad range of ideas exchanged in 3-day workshops as well as all new Mini-Workshops. Check 'em out!

Workshop discounts!

Large Mold

GO BIG! Participants produce multipart sand molds for castings ranging from 200 lbs. to 600 lbs. in iron with full logistics support. To participate in the large mold workshop, you must submit a project proposal! Only one mold per participant. This is a pre-conference workshop, beginning 9am on Tuesday, April 2nd. 

Fee $145 plus all materials

Maximum of 10 participants

Iron $.50 per pound

Sand $25 per 100 pounds

Instructor: Christyn Overstake, South Bend Museum of Art

Assistants: Robin Baker, University of Notre Dame

David Marquez, Western Kentucky University

 

Submit proposals prior to registration to slrather@olemiss.edu and gabrielledinger@ymail.com

Ceramic Shell

Learn how to sprue and prepare wax pattern(s) for dipping in ceramic shell, which is one of many lost wax methods. High detail can be achieved with ease. Participants must arrive with completed wax pattern(s) that weigh no more than 5 lbs total. Only one mold per participant; multiple patterns will be sprued on the same tree. The fee includes sprue wax, ceramic shell, burn out, and iron. Participants will need to bring a respirator. This is a pre-conference workshop, beginning 9am on Tuesday, April 2nd.

Fee $145

Maximum of 16 participants

Instructor: Kelly Wilton, Staach

Beginning Greensand

Learn how to make oil-bonded greensand, use process-specific tools, and discover the possibilities as well as the limitations of this type of molding process. Participants will make two (2), two-part molds. The first is a small mold using switch plate patterns provided by the workshop instructors. The second mold can be made from various patterns provided by the workshop instructors or a pattern brought by the participant, no larger than 6” x 6” x 4 inches thick. The patterns for the two-part mold should be made of a rigid durable material, such as wood, metal, or hard plastic. The fee includes greensand, patterns, flasks, and iron. 

Fee $145

Maximum of 12 Participants

Instructor: James Vanderpool, Metals Museum

Assistant: Cassi Rebman, Metals Museum

Advanced Greensand - Cup, Saucer, Spoon

Learn how to make oil-bonded greensand, use process-specific tools, and discover the advanced possibilities as well as the limitations of this type of molding process. The cup, saucer, spoon mold was originally part of a final test in the U.S. Navy foundry. To become a professional mold maker, the applicant would need to complete a single mold of all three components in greensand and have the mold cast perfectly. Creating a multiple part mold of a cup, saucer, and spoon in this way is challenging because of the fragility of the molding material and the pattern. This is a workshop devoted to advanced techniques in greensand to honor the tradition and history of this mold. Participants should bring their own cup (no undercuts on the inside of the cup!), saucer, and spoon. The pattern must be made of rigid material such as ceramic, glass, or hard plastic. Wax patterns are not acceptable. The fee includes greensand, flasks, and iron.

Fee $145

Maximum of 4 Participants

Instructor: Bob Rogers, Metals Museum 

Assistant: Charles Logan, Metals Museum

Island of Misfit Toys Cupola

Introduction to the principles, materials, and techniques needed to build and operate a cupola blast furnace through hands-on instruction and construction from drawing board to bottom drop! Participants work together to build a furnace and run it during the conference as a production furnace, using pre-sourced materials and some pre-fabricated components. It is highly recommended that participants have metal fabrication and hand tool experience as well as the ability to lift at least 25 lbs. This workshop results in a new production furnace that will be donated to Sloss Metal Arts. Participants will each be allowed to customize and cast a Sloss ingot mold. 

Fee $145

Maximum of 10 Participants

Instructor: Dan Matheson, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Assistant: Lloyd Mandelbaum, Chicago Crucible

Multi Parted Mold

Learn how to create parting lines and ram a multi part mold in resin-bonded sand! Participants must arrive with a completed pattern. Patterns should be no larger than 12 inches in any direction and sturdy enough to withstand the ramming up process of the mold creation. One mold per participant, with a minimum of two parts and a maximum of ten parts. The fee includes a maximum of 100 lbs. of iron and 300 lbs. of resin-bonded sand.  

Fee $145

Maximum of 15 Participants

Instructor: Durant Thompson, University of Mississippi

Assistant: Aaron Hussy, APH Studios


 

Improvisational Mold  

Get familiarized with improvisational mold making strategies, such as when to improvise, pattern-making materials that best lend themselves to improvisational mold making, problem solving, and more. Participants will create a pattern on site from soft, semi-rigid, and/or natural materials, revealing the inherent aesthetic qualities of such materials. Some pattern making materials are provided in addition to any materials participants may bring with them. The fee includes basic implements of construction and up to 100 lbs. of iron and 300 lbs. of resin-bonded sand.

Fee $145

Maximum of 10 Participants

Instructor: Jessica Hope Whittington, University of Kentucky

Assistant: Caleb Williams, Independent Artist

A Better Two-Part Mold

For beginners that have never made a mold or are interested in improving basic mold making techniques. Each day of the workshop participants will make a small mold, using different materials. Participants should bring 1 – 3 simple objects/patterns that are 3 – 5 inches maximum in the largest dimension. The fee includes mold-making materials, up to 50 lbs of resin-bonded sand, and iron.

Fee $145

Maximum of 10 Participants

Instructor: Brianne Nelson, Rochester Arc and Flame Center

Assistant: Ashley Tabor, Pots A Lot Pottery

Lost Wax with Resin Bonded Sand

Learn investment molding using resin-bonded sand for wax meltout rather than parting. Participants should bring one completed wax pattern that is no larger than 8 inches in any direction. The fee includes sprue wax, up to 250 lbs. of sand, meltout, and iron.  

Fee $145

Maximum of 10 Participants

Instructor: Ivan Berejkoff, The Crucible

Assistant: Vanessa Zagaroli, S.K.A.S.T.

Direct Carve Mold Making

Introduction to “patternless mold making.” Participants create a casting using a simple two-part mold with a core. This workshop teaches the basics of creating improvisational, hollow castings with steel inclusions for later assembly as well as many carving tips and tricks using both hand and power tools! Participants will need to bring a respirator. Contact workshop co-chairs for a complete list of suggested tools.  

Fee $145

Maximum of 10 Participants

Instructor: Gerry Masse, Sculpture Trails Outdoor Museum

For suggested supply list email slrather@olemiss.edu and gabrielledinger@ymail.com

Flexible Mould: Blanket Technique

Learn how to prepare an object for mould-making, plot parting lines, design blanket features and keys, and create the mould using gelatin, a reusable, flexible moulding material! Participants should bring 1 – 3 objects/patterns that are 3 – 5 inches maximum in the largest dimension. The fee includes gelatin for flexible mould-making, plaster mother mould, and a wax edition. This workshop does not result in an iron casting.  

Fee $145

Maximum of 15 Participants

Instructor: Olenka Kleban, OCAD University

Assistant: Camille Rauton, OCAD University

Cuttlebone Casting for the Pour Floor – MINI WORKSHOP

Learn how to create miniature castings from carved cuttlebones. Participants will use a direct carve method to create a void in the cuttlebone. Molds are attached to a sprue system to be poured without special equipment. The fee includes cuttlebones for carving, sprue system and resin-bonded sand, and iron. This workshop is a mini workshop, requiring less time than other workshops.  

Fee $75

Maximum of 15 Participants per session (2 sessions)

Instructor: Tina Neiweem, Neiweem Industries

Rust Printmaking with Ferrous Metals – MINI WORKSHOP

Create prints on paper using ferrous materials, natural colorants, and an expedited oxidation process. Participants can bring ferrous metals, paper, and cloth to use in addition to materials supplied by the workshop fee. This workshop is a mini workshop, requiring less time than other workshops. This workshop does not result in an iron casting, but does result in beautiful works on paper and cloth, such as wearable items brought by participants.      

Fee $75

Maximum of 15 Participants per session (2 sessions)

Instructor: Lauren G. Koch, University of Maryland

Metal Coatings, Textures, and Patinas on Paper – MINI WORKSHOP

Introduction to various drawing techniques using iron and bronze coatings on paper. Traditional and non-traditional patinas will also be addressed. Participants create their own vision on paper utilizing various techniques and innovation. The fee includes paper and patinas. This workshop is a mini workshop, requiring less time than other workshops. This workshop does not result in an iron casting, but does result in beautiful works on paper.      

Fee $75

Maximum of 15 Participants

Instructor: Kurt Dyrhaug, Lamar University

Workshop discounts!

We love for people to take workshops! Organize yourselves and sign up as a group for super deep discounts on your favorite workshops BEFORE MARCH 3, as follows:

Group of 5, 10% break = $652 total, or $130/person (regular price $725 for 5 people). With only workshops in your cart, use the code WORKSHOP5 for discount at checkout. 

 

Group of 10, 20% break = $1160 total, or $116/person (regular price $1450 for 10 people). With only workshops in your cart, use the code WORKSHOP10 for discount at checkout. 

 

We suggest using PayPal as your payment method to split the transaction between more than one card or account. If you are unable to pay all of the workshop fees for your group in one transaction, contact us so that we can get your group a special case coupon code.