Elegant clay, molten bronze, colors applied by blowtorch – learn about the creation process and view the work of master sculptor Nano Lopez at Park West Gallery’s Detroit-area exhibition.
Take advantage of this free exhibition to view 36 of Lopez’s beloved “Nanimals” and figurative sculptures, all of which will be available to collectors from June 7-28.
Lopez’s “Nanimals” are colorful creatures whose creativity and playfulness appeals to viewers of all ages. At the exhibition, meet Davian, a dragon that loves ice cream; Tracy, a turtle ready for the races; Foxy, a pensive fox; and Elizabeth, a life-sized ostrich geared up to shop.
Also on exhibit are Lopez’s figures, which combine his classical training with experimentation to produce sculptures like a winged goddess holding the world. All of his sculptures contain organic textures and human-made objects, conveying his respect for nature, science and creativity.
“By incorporating 21st century elements in a surreal approach, Nano Lopez has a way of capturing one’s attention, leaving the viewer spellbound,” says David Gorman, Gallery Director for Park West Gallery.
For more about Lopez, check out this interview in the Oakland Press with the master sculptor about his art and the exhibition.
Lopez uses the “lost wax” technique to create his bronze sculptures. The process involves sculpting a clay model, making a silicone mold from the model and pouring wax into this mold. The hardened wax is then used to create a ceramic shell. The term “lost wax” refers to wax melting out of the shell when it’s baked in a kiln. Melted bronze is poured into the ceramic shell to create the final sculpture.
Once the sculpture is cool and colored with golden paint, Lopez applies patinas, essentially cooking colors onto each sculpture. On average, each sculpture takes three to four months to complete.
“At first glance, it is uncertain which period in time these works hail from,” Gorman says. “Upon further investigation, it is apparent that these works assume a contemporary role.”
Lopez pursued his passion for art at the age of 15, taking clay from construction sites in order to experiment at home. Lopez studied under masters such as Francisco Baron in Spain and Manuel Izquierdo, and at highly-respected institutions like the Superior National School of Beaux Arts in Paris.
Lopez relocated to the U.S. in 1983, finding work at various foundries. Four years later, he decided to open his own enlargement and model-making business. During this time he honed his skills in welding, tooling bronzes, and his own techniques with patinas.
In 2006, Lopez made the decision to become a professional artist. Three years later, Park West Gallery began representing him, welcoming him to the gallery’s mission of re-imagining the world of fine art.
The Nano Lopez exhibition will only be on display from June 7-28, so this is a rare opportunity to see a variety of his Nanimals and figurative works all in one show.
Park West Gallery is located at 29469 Northwestern Highway in Southfield, Michigan. Admission to the gallery and show is free to the public. The gallery is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week. The gallery is closed June 5 and 6 for private Nano Lopez events.
For further information, call 248-354-2343.