African antelope bronze sculptures by John Tolmay include Kudu, Sable, Wildebeest or Gnu, Eland, Bushbuck, Thompsons Gazelle and Bongo. These antelope are some of the iconic African animals that roam the savannah and tropical forests. The kudu with its magnificent spiralled horns and the secretive Bongo and Bushbuck are well known to hunters. The Eland is the largest of the African Antelope. The great Wildebeest migration of the Serengeti and Masai Mara is a spectacle played out every year for two months and witnessed by many travellers to Africa. The life and death drama of this great journey of grazers across the plains of Kenya and Tanzania also includes antelope like the Thompsons Gazelle and Sable.
A lot of people have started to ask me about the Foundry and what it is like to bring a wax or a clay piece to life. So I have put together a little series of images for you give you a feeling of what the ‘back-end’ of my work looks like.
In order of appearance:
- Putting the patina on the piece called Gentle Giant of the Savannah. It’s messy work and the chemicals are noxious and dangerous to say the least but it’s that careful blending of heat and chemicals that brings up all the texturing and nuances in the piece and this is what I already have in my mind when I am still in the wax or clay stage.
- Putting the patina on Belligerence – thought it was never going to end but I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to achieve. Very happy with the result.
- Cal Paulson handling the heat. Here he is putting the finishing touches to the Stag that was made for the Deer Path Inn.
- Sculpting the moose that we will be collecting next week from the Foundry.
- The new hydraulic lift we have had to purchase in order to be able to move all 250lbs of Belligerence around. A great tool that will be useful for a few others too. Not getting any younger you know.
It’s not always evident how big a piece is in comparison to another and with this in mind I offer you some material to help you understand relative scaling in 3 groups of sculptures. The first selection is of Accepting the Challenge, Jungle Ghost and Gentle Giant.
The second selection is of the two main kudu sculptures and the third selection is of the three warthog pieces.
The images were taken to show relative height and width of each piece.
Hope this helps you understand better the scaling on these pieces.
The War Department and Lord Derby sculptures sold out at the beginning of the year. Due to the popularity of those 2 pieces I thought it was a good idea to made a new sculpture of an Eland Bull in an edition of 12 which I am very pleased with. It’s very dynamic, attempting to capture that classic gait of the eland when it’s trotting away at a very deceptive speed.
I continue to grow the collection of the ever-popular Buffalo pieces with For Whom the Bell Tolls. A classic pose into which you can read anything. Are you threatened? Is he threatened?
And finally I am very happy to bring you a new study of 3 Wild Dogs running through long grass. One dog jumping – leaping up to see what’s ahead, another following the scent trail and the third just keeping up the pace. A fascinating piece to make.
I am very pleased to introduce my latest piece to you.
My first ever wildebeest sculpture – what a fantastic challenge to try and capture this quintessentially African spectacle that takes place every year on the Mara River. This drama is now classified as one of the “Seven New Wonders of the World.” Over two million animals migrate from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania to the lush grasslands of the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya. And crossing crocodile-infested the Mara River alive is one of the biggest challenges they encounter.
I am convinced that only Africa can serve up such an incredible extravaganza of life and death. Enjoy.