Hi, I’m Will Hunt. I draw upon past experiences using line, form, colour and technique, striving to create an intense emotion and rich experience in the observer by creating simple, beautiful, humble, unique and timeless abstract pieces of sculpture inspired by nature.
I was very lucky growing up having a father who spent a lot of time with my sister and I, teaching us how to draw and paint and make things. My father was an industrial designer, a kind of cross between an artist and an engineer. He had a tiny workshop at the back of our garage where we would make all our own toys. It was a very creative childhood. We were also very lucky to have a lot freedom to roam around the parks and woods of the garden suburb that we lived in. Although it was London, we were surrounded by nature.
Like my father I went on to study Industrial Design at Central Saint Martins and spent the next twenty years designing hundreds of everyday consumer products. But I slowly became disenchanted with the whole consumer world and by a series of chance events found myself designing and making sculpture. Something that has become an intense focus of my life. It’s still a mixture of art and engineering, but the things I create have more meaning to me and more of me in them.
One of things I love about creating this piece is that I’ve used every skill I’ve ever learnt. Drawing, painting, 3D CAD (Computer-Aided Design), welding, casting, wood turning, metal turning, milling, drilling…and I think I’ve used just about every tool in my workshop (And I’ve got a lot of tools!)
Fiora Grande is cast in aluminium using the sand casting process – a process that is thousands of years old and uses sand as the moulding material. To make the shape or cavity in the sand for the molten aluminium I have to make a full-size version of the sculpture in wood, which is called the pattern. Then I make the sand box which holds the pattern while I pack sand around it. The sandbox consists of two halves which must be opened to remove the pattern leaving an imprint in the sand to pour the molten aluminium. Due to the large size of Fiora the sandbox weighs about a quarter of a ton, so I have a hoist that I use to lift it. I then melt aluminium in a large furnace which is poured into the mould. All this equipment is bespoke. I’ve had to design and make it especially for this purpose.
After casting there’s a fair amount of machining and finishing to do before I can start painting it and that’s when the fun begins. After priming the aluminium, I use artists’ professional grade acrylics because they are light fast and have the pigment intensity that I’m looking for. I then apply multiple coats of high-grade marine varnish to protect the acrylic.
This process is the result of thousands of hours of research, exploration of materials, designing, making, experimenting. A seemingly never-ending cycle of failure and success to eventually give me what I want, a high-quality piece of sculpture that can be enjoyed for generations to come.