Here are some pictures of the Fall 2015 Grade 10 Visual Arts class at South Huron District High School working on a Concrete Mosaic Bench Project with Dashwood artist Ruth Anne Merner.
How the Benches were made:
- intro to mosaics and the concrete bench project with Ruth Anne
- students create designs within a template of what they would like benches to look like; design is a simple line drawing like in a colouring book
- cut and sort coloured stained glass
- lay template on a flat surface and lay small cut glass pieces into the design leaving a small gap between each piece of glass (that is where the concrete will go)
- Once all the glass is in place, cover the mosaic with clear mactac, pressing down so all pieces stick to the mactac.
- carefully flip the mactac over into an oiled or greased mold. (We used Vaseline)
- mix a quantity of sandy concrete thoroughly. Get rid of any lumps. The concrete should be thick like stew
- pour concrete into mold and spread gently (mold should be almost half full or a bit less)
- tap or bang the mold gently by lifting one end at a time and dropping it: this forces any air bubbles to the surface
- lay a section of wire mesh on the poured concrete.
- mix and pour a second layer of concrete, this time with more aggregate (a stone concrete)
- again, bang or tap out the air bubbles; sign your name in it the next day
- let set for 3-4 days, then carefully flip the bench out of the mold – caution: it will be heavy!
- clean off any covered areas off to expose the glass, fill any little holes with a bit of the sand mix concrete
- let benches cure/dry for a few months
- set on concrete legs or metal stands and enjoy!
4 benches were created by the students. Once cured and support structures fabricated, the benches will be installed permanently in the Exeter area – possibly on the McNaughton Trail- though that location is to be determined.
Click Here to view a movie of the making of the Benches.
This project is supported by Art aRound Town and Communities in Bloom, Exeter.