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A Visit to the Marinelli Art Foundry, Florence, Italy

I was in my twenties when I first came upon the Ferdinando Marinelli Art Foundry in Florence Italy; a third generation art foundry opened in 1905. I was eager to learn and the foundry was very surprised and seemed thrilled that an American would want to hang out and engage in such work - I loved every minute of it, and anxiously awaited my return....The son, whose grandfather started the foundry, now runs the company and graciously showed me the new facility. Molds off original Michelangelo sculptures lie on shelves surrounded by row after row, piled to the ceiling, of molds from famous sculptures found in Italy and specifically Florence. The Foundry is large, well equipped with the latest of tools to move large molds and bronzes, but it is the artistic hand finishing techniques that have made the Marinelli foundry famous, and in which Ferdinando is so proud - the lost wax method is done as the early Romans did, and do it to perfection! dream of spending an entire year under the tutelage of such a Foundry.....heaven!

Ferdinando Marinelli (left) explaining the mold technique.

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