National Bronze Symposium
The Yellow Springs Experience National Bronze Symposium was held October 13-26, 2013. Its purpose was to create public art through an experiential process that would impact residents of Yellow Springs, as well as visitors from the entire Miami Valley.
Artists were chosen from a national submission and jury process. Susan Byrnes(Cincinnati, OH), D’Jean Jawrunner(Tucumcari, NM), and John Weidman (Brookline, NH) joined invited artist, Brian Maughan of Yellow Springs. Over the course of two weeks,1700 people attended lectures, demonstrations, and educational events, culminating in a live bronze pour at the Antioch College Foundry with over 250 people in attendance on a very cold evening.
The Bronze Symposium also provided an important educational component locally at Antioch College, the Antioch School, Yellow Springs public schools, K-12, and the Clark County Juvenile Detention Center.
Under the guidance of Yellow Springs High School art teachers, Elisabeth Simon and Karleen Materne, an aluminum casting was executed. Students from the Dayton STEM school also participated. This was part of the newly implemented Project Based Learning (PBL). Students collaborated on a theme and narrowed down the vision to 11 tiles. The casts were made reﬂecting the different themes of the piece. Sometime during the warmer months the piece will be mounted and available for public viewing. Some comments from Ms. Simon’s students were “ Now I notice public art whenever I’m in a city and realize all the work and number of people it takes to create the piece.” “When I was interviewing for college, they talked about lost wax casting. I already knew the process. It’s not something most high school art classes get to experience.”
All goals of the The Bronze Symposium were achieved. The entire two weeks were successful beyond anyone’s imagination. Project Manager Joanne Caputo’s tireless work, creativity, and in- sight provided Yellow Springs with an experience rarely available outside academia or a much larger city.
Phase II of the project, funded with a $5,000 grant from the Foundation, resulted in the casting and mounting of 12 sculptures throughout the Village. The resulting Bronze Sculpture Trail is the ﬁrst of its kind in the village, with 12 castings mounted on low posts or walls and promoted through print and Internet maps as a public art trail. This public art is another wonderful addition to the Yellow Springs community.