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Have you spotted our steel deer sculpture?
If visitors are in any doubt as to the nature of our farm, when they arrive they are welcomed by our wall mounted steel sculpture of a deer, created by local Sussex based metal artist Alan Williams.
Alan was commissioned in Spring 2020 to create a sculpture that would reflect the ethos of Sky Park Farm – sympathetic to the surrounding landscape, devoted to deer. The team gave Alan a set of antlers from one of the farm’s sire stags from which the sculpture was modelled. A challenging task, Alan had to consider the scale and structure of the building and the method of assembling and installation. The piece took over three months to produce.
Before starting work on the sculpture Alan created scale drawings in his studio before crafting a metal framework made from steel bars to get the proportions and shape of the piece. The panels of the face were then templated in cardboard and then plasma cut by hand in sheet steel. Each panel was then individually heated in the forge to a bright orange temperature and hammered into shape on the anvil. Once the panels were welded to the framework, they were heated further with an oxy/ propane torch to fine tune and tie the pieces into the sculpture. The body and neck were created in the same way using cardboard templates; the ears from steel tubes, cut and forged. The antlers were created from individually forged steel bars which were welded together creating the finished elements. The final sculpture was then sanded, polished and degreased ready for application of a solution to the surface to create the rusted patina, which was then sealed.
Working with Estate Manager Dominic Strutt for technical assistance, Alan was able to build the load bearing bracket and assembly mechanisms to allow for installation on the side of the Visitor Centre building.
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