Carving workshop

 bruton church interior with pipe organ facade including carvings  made by laurent robert

New pipe organ carvings for Bruton Parish Episcopal Church in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia.

 

Bruton Parish Church was established in 1674, the church was constructed between 1711-15 in the Colonial Williamsburg's Historic Area. Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Richard Henry Lee, George Wythe, Patrick Henry, and George Mason were among those who attended services at Bruton Parish Church.

A new pipe organ was successfully built by the Dobson organ builders. I designed and carved the pipe shades together with the organ builder's suggestions and my knowledge in the early 18 th century Georgian architectural ornament. The Greek revival Palladian style flourished in England as well as in the United States.

About the new pipe organ sculptures and their relationship with the casework:

 A total of eleven carvings based on six new designs were produced to identify the organ case esthetic according to its permanent location. The new pipe organ sculptures are fixed under their architraves and also below the swan neck pediments. A pair of consoles or corbels are supporting the swan neck pediments highlighting the central part of the organ façade.  Two winding carved rosettes were inserted within the collars of the serpentine pediments. An anthemion carved in a Greek revival style is situated at the top.
All six pipe shades carvings were made in basswood and carved in about ¾ “thickness material, for the two consoles or corbels 2”. The anthemion and the two rosettes were carved in 1 ½” material.

Having in mind that the carvings were going to be gilded, I tooled the surfaces prior to finishing in anticipation for a unified gold appearance.

Rosettes

Winding and unwinding carved rosettes

Winding and unwinding carved rosettes

Unwinding carved rosette

Unwinding carved rosette

Carved rosette inserted in swan neck pediment collar

Carved rosette inserted in swan neck pediment collar

Swan neck pediment pipe shades

pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including pipe shades carved by laurent robert

Bass and treble outer towers pipe shades

pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including an acanthus drawing by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including an acanthus hand drawing by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a tower carving by laurent robert
A portion of a pipe shade carved in limewood featuring acanthus leaves

Towers pipe shades next to pediment

pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a tower pipe shades drawing by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a tower pipe shades carving by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including two tower pipe shades carvings by laurent robert

Consoles

front and side view drawing of console with volute and acanthus leaf
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including two carved consoles by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a console carved by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures of two consoles standing on a wooden bench with  carving gouges

Consoles carving progress

Acroterion

pencil drawing of an anthemion or acroterion
holding an acroterion or anthemion carving progress with carving gouges and mallet on a carvers bench

Acroterion carving progress

mounted acroterion or anthemion onto a vertical surface

Swan neck pediments

pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a swan neck pediment and  rosette assembled by laurent robert
pipe organ sculptures for bruton church in williamsburg including a swan neck pediment carved ogees by laurent robert

A,B: Cutting the inserts for the rosettes.   C: Swan neck with rosette in place.  D,E: Tracing and cutting the swan neck collars.

F,G: The moldings are carved (cyma recta, doucine, ogee)

Article written by "The Diapason" here

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