Sunday, December 11, 2011

Lightworks for Brightworks

I was an artist-in-residence at the wonderful school Brightworks
this week. They had asked me to do some metal working with the
kids, and I decided I wanted to work on a chandelier made out of
spoons for the school. I brought lots of spoons (both metal and
plastic), and a few tools, including a heat gun and a propane
torch. Plastic and metal are really fun to play with when you heat
them up, and spoons were the perfect way to introduce this idea to the kids.

We used the heat gun to bend plastic spoons into all sorts of interesting shapes.

The torch was great for bending the metal spoons.

The kids were also super interested in cold-forming the metal spoons by clamping them in the vise and shaping them with a
hammer. Ben wanted to make a spoon with a 360 degree twist in the
handle. This was his first attempt, using the vice and a hammer. He
discovered it was challenging to get the spoon handle to do a full twist without breaking.

Ben tried again, this time with the aid of the torch.


After we tried bending and twisting the spoons, we welded some of
them together

After the kids went home for the day, the adults got a chance to play.

The finished spoon chandelier! The kids decided the colors reminded
them of sunsets and sherbet. It certainly casts a lovely warm glow over the welding studio.