5-week Intensive Course: Anatomy of the Skull and Sculpting the Portrait from Life with Maudie Brady and Eran Webber
This course is specially designed for students with a strong interest in portrait sculpture. Intended to provide a thorough study of the portrait from the perspective of anatomy, as well as direct observation, this intensive five-week workshop will be divided in two parts to offer students a 24-day sculpting experience of the human skull, and the human head and neck from life.
Team-taught by extraordinary FAA Faculty, including the Director of Anatomy, Maudie Brady, and Director of Summer Sculpture, Eran Webber, students will start the course working to develop an anatomically accurate ecorché of the human skull by using visual constructive tools to gain an understanding of the anatomy of the head.
During the first week of Part I, Maudie will guide students through a thorough study of the anatomy of the skull in order to:
– Understand the bones that make up the different parts of the skull
– Observe and identify the simplified planes of the skull in preparation for sculpting the skull
– Block in the clay profile of the skull using a plaster skull as the model
– Block in the widths (parietal bones, zygomatic arch, mandible’s ramus)
– Connect contours between profile and front view
– Learn to check for accuracy
Maudie will begin a conversation about neck and shoulder girdle bones relevant to creating a portrait, in this way, students ensure their heads will be appear convincingly attached to the body of their subjects.
By week two, students will start adding the facial muscles to skull, Maudie will talk about facial muscles and their actions/purpose for expression; students will continue to add deeper facial muscles and work up to adding the superficial facial muscles (19 muscles in total). An explanation of neck structures and how they interact with the shoulder girdle will follow as students will begin to block in the neck structures and clavicles and relevant shoulder girdle bones, and ultimately refine the volumes of the neck and shoulders so that they connect organically with the skull.
During Part II of the workshop, Faculty Eran Webber and Sanne van Tongeren will help students apply this newfound knowledge to sculpting two portraits in clay from living models.
Regular demonstrations and individual critiques will guide students through basic and advanced concepts of the portrait, light and form, anatomical and proportional canons to support a visual understanding, analyzing depth and understanding contour movement in space.
Particular emphasis will be placed on developing a structured thought process for deconstructing visual information and creating a methodical approach for translating anatomical information accurately in clay. In this way, students will be guided through a comprehensive investigation of the human form and equipped with the tools to intelligently compose an accurate and convincing portrait in 3 dimensions.
During this part of the workshop, students will spend 10 days working on two portraits for a total of 60 hours with the live model.
During the fifth and final week of the course, students will cast one of their portraits.
Instruction in English by individual critique
Attendance in the Academy’s full time Anatomy course and Art History lectures during the period of the workshop.
All materials included
144 hours of instruction/60 hours with the portrait model
Maximum enrollment 12 students
Beginning – Intermediate – Advanced levels welcome
Casting and shipping assistance
After graduating in 1995 from the University of Melbourne (Bachelor of Art) and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (Bachelor of Fine Art -Sculpture) in 1998 Maudie pursued a career in the Film and Television Industry, and over the course of the next 12 years learnt a wide range of skills within the Art and Construction Departments where she developed a love for sculpting. Realising there was much more to learn specifically about figurative sculpture she sought out the best training on offer in 2013 at the Florence Academy of Art. In 2016 she completed the Figurative Sculpture Diploma at FAA with a student teaching scholarship, winning Best Drawing of the Sculpture Program and Best Nude for her Life Size sculpture ‘Laura’ at the 12th ARC International Salon Competition. She continues to teach in the Sculpture Program at the Academy whilst maintaining a personal art practice in the studio the Academy provides.
See more of Maudie’s work at www.maudiebrady.com
Eran Webber grew up in an artistic environment on a kibbutz on the Carmel Coast of Israel. His artistic training began in high school and at evening courses in Tel Aviv. In 2007, he moved to Italy to study the fundamentals of classical figurative art and began sculpting at the Accademia di Belle Arti. Later that year, Webber was accepted into The Florence Academy of Art’s Sculpture Program and graduated in 2010. He was on faculty at the academy from 2010 until 2013 as the Principal Instructor of the Sculpture Program. Webber has taught workshops in Italy, Israel, and the United States, has exhibited internationally. His work can be found in private collections throughout Europe and the United States, and he is represented by Galerie Michael, in Beverly Hills, California. Webber is currently living and working in his sculpture studio in Israel, on the same kibbutz where he was born.
See more of Eran’s work in the Alumni Gallery and at www.eranwebber.com
Sanne van Tongeren
Sanne van Tongeren was born in The Netherlands in 1978. She studied ancient Greek and Latin language and culture and took evening classes in sculpture and stone carving. After her MA she taught classical languages for eight years. In 2009 she moved to Florence to study the fundamentals of classical figurative sculpture. In her third year of study at the FAA, Sanne joined the teaching staff as an assistant, and is now Principal Instructor. The tradition of sculpture that is rooted in ancient Greek culture and reached its summit in the Italian Renaissance was passed down to artists until the end of the 19th century when it was abandoned by art academies. At the Florence Academy, Sanne found a place where students are brought back into dialogue with the old masters and where they are being prepared for self expression through craftsmanship, discipline and real understanding of the human body. Transfer of knowledge is as important for her as artistic aspirations. Her moving spirit in sculpture is her fascination for strength in the human body, in the rhythmical movement of dance as well as in the balanced poses of yoga.
See more of Sanne’s work in the Alumni Gallery and at www.sannevantongeren.nl
Georgina Mills is an Australian artist who trained in contemporary sculpture at the Adelaide College of the Arts; Arts Administration at the University of South Australia; and Figurative Sculpture at The Florence Academy of Art. At The FAA Georgina was awarded winter and spring scholarships (2017), Outstanding Performance in Écorché Sculpture (2017), Best Écorché Sculpture (2018) and the Forth Year Sculpture Residency (2019). During this residency she began work on a series that unpacks grief, an experience fundamental to human existence. Georgina will begin assistant teaching écorché in the 2019-20 academic year.
See more of Georgina’s work in the Alumni Gallery and at www.georginamillsart.com
Octavio Palomino is a figurative sculptor based in Florence, Italy. He trained in sculpture at the National Autonomous Superior School of Fine Arts of Perú (2014-16) and graduate from The Florence Academy of Art (2016-19), where he was awarded a Work-Study scholarship in his final year, year in which one of his sculpture “Distanza” is selected to participate at ARC exhibition. Octavio has led sculpture workshops at the Chancay Municipal Museum, Perú and in 2018 he founded the Hasta Perro Studio in Florence focusing at animal sculpture and, at the same time, private workshops of classical art such as Octavio Palomino Studio, where he continues to teach sculpture.
See more of Octavio’s work in the Alumni Gallery and at www.octaviopalominosculptor.com
ADDRESS: Via Aretina 293 – Florence
Minimum enrollment requirement for all studio workshops is 5. Students will be notified if this number is not reached 60 days before the first day of class. At that time, they will be given the choice of either enrolling in another workshop, availability permitting, or having their payment refunded. Students may continue to apply to workshops even after the deadline and through the first day of the course.
The Florence Academy of Art reserves the right to substitute instructors of any course at the last minute or during the session. Once you apply and are accepted, you will receive an acceptance packet via email with information on housing, materials and payment of the non-refundable deposit due immediately to hold your place. The balance must be received two months before the first day of class. No refunds will be given for cancellation after payment of the balance.
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