The California Sculptors Symposium welcomes educators, artists and students to an energetic, creative environment overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Featuring lectures and demonstrations by premier sculptors; Instructors are experienced in stone carving, wood carving, clay, fibers, life drawing and teach general to advanced sculpting techniques. At the end of the symposium, CSS hosts an art exhibition of participants’ work. We hope you will join us for a fantastic week!
ABOUT CALIFORNIA SCULPTORS SYMPOSIUM
California Sculptors Symposium (CSS) is a 501c3 established in 2003 to promote education in sculpture. This annual, week-long, symposium is held at Camp Ocean Pines in beautiful Cambria, California. The camp is situated on a bluff overlooking the ocean, away from the distractions of daily life. This educational event is non-discriminatory and non-judgmental bringing together about 50-60 attendees and 6-8 professional instructors each year. Throughout the week, lectures and demonstrations on design, technical topics, and professional trade information are aimed at increasing the sculptors’ creativity and expertise. We invite students, artists of all levels, and the general public to gain a better understanding of how sculptures are created. It is a stimulating environment where participants come together to learn and share their enjoyment of working with stone and other media.
The first symposium in 2003 introduced a program that welcomed educators, artists and students to an energetic, creative environment overlooking the Pacific Ocean. CSS continues to feature lectures and demonstrations by premier sculptors. Instructors are experienced in stone carving, clay, wood carving, fibers, life drawing and teach general to advanced sculpting techniques.
Due to COVID-19, the general public will not be invited to participate in CSS’ annual art exhibition and BBQ. We look forward to resuming our public outreach and juried art exhibition in 2023.
We hope you will join us for a fantastic week! A DRAFT Schedule of Events for the week is available HERE.
Jason Arkles is an American sculptor, art historian, podcaster and author living in Florence, Italy. Beginning his training as a sculptor in 1996 at the Charles H. Cecil Studio in Florence, Arkles soon began to teach in the sculpture department there.
In 2006 Arkles published Sculpting From Life – A Studio Manual of The Sight-Size Method examining various experimental sculptural techniques. Then in 2013 Arkles published an English translation and commentary of Leon Battista Alberti’s Della Statua, regarded as the earliest figurative sculpture manual in Europe. He is currently writing a survey of optical approaches and techniques in Western European sculpture which unites and contextualizes contemporary and historical practice.
As a practicing sculptor, Arkles operates a studio in Florence and works on private commissions, specializing in portraiture in marble, but also producing figures and monuments in various media. His work is largely driven by a sense of narrative and psychological symbol, and this has sometimes led Arkles to foray into ecclesiastical work. To this end, in 2010 Arkles received a Master’s degree in Sacred Art and Architecture from Ateneo Pontificio Regina Apostolorum, a degree program instituted by the Vatican in 2007 and under Pontifical authority.
Recently, Arkles’ role of lecturer and instructor has come to the fore, locally and internationally. He has held a position since 2014 on the History of Art Department at the British Institute of Florence, and lectures for several institutions and studios. In 2015, Arkles assembled his lectures and research into a podcast called “The Sculptor’s Funeral”, which is ongoing and reaches a global audience.
Figure Workshop: In this course, sculptor Jason Arkles leads the class in creating one-third sized figures in clay, using the visual measurement techniques of the Sight Size method. Working from a live model posed in a seated position, students will learn how to build clay figures of substantial dimensions without the use of an armature, in water-based clay. Instructor Jason Arkles will work alongside students throughout the duration of the course, providing a demonstration of techniques and practices for the entirety of the course.
With sculptural objects formed in concrete, Andrea makes spatial fields by placing basic concrete forms; rods, planks, slabs, wedges and ramps, in an environment. The space includes an invitation to viewers to enter the field, an architectural invitation, and to move or roam freely around the objects. The freedom to roam and move has the power for us to create an inner harmony and our own inner score.
Andrea’s most recent exhibition was a solo show at San Marco Gallery, Dominican University, in San Rafael. She has shown her work in the San Francisco Bay Area, in New York, and in Europe. In addition to a recent residency in Italy, she was an artist in residence at Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito.
Concrete Workshop: Day one, instruction on how to build wood forms for concrete sculpture. Day two, instruction on how to mix and pour concrete. We’ll cover the topics of creating a cut list, cutting wood, screwing together forms, applying form release, mixing concrete, adding pigment and other additives, pouring concrete, and finally releasing the forms.
Barbara has lived and worked in marble studios in Paros, Greece and in Pietrasanta and Querceta, Italy. She has worked with the figure and body as subjects and is currently creating sculptures that are more abstract and free form.
Stone Workshop: Instruction for beginners on tools and techniques of stone carving. Barbara will guide you in developing your concept, choosing an appropriate stone, and how to use hand and power tools.
Stephanie Metz uses her biologically abstract sculpture to explore the tension created when opposing qualities are forced to coexist. Her sculptural forms are suggestive of anatomy in its opposite extremes: soft, weighty folds of flesh melded with the clean-cut architecture of bone. From afar her sculptures appear hard, smooth, and cold like marble, but closer observation reveals the opposite: a visibly soft, textured surface. Felted wool accounts for both the appearance and structure of the sculpture: Stephanie compacts loose fiber into nearly solid freestanding forms through a precise and laborious process known as needle felting.
Stephanie Metz was raised in the Bay Area and received her BFA from the University of Oregon; she lives with her techie husband and two sons in San Jose, where she works from a studio downtown. Metz is represented by Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco; her work is in the collection of the Centre for Craft & Design in the U.K. and the Triton Museum in Santa Clara, California.She has been featured in San Jose’s Content Magazine, Adobe Inspire Magazine, American Craft, and 500 Felt Objects. Her work was featured in the 2015 Rijswijk Textile Biennial in the Netherlands as well as the exhibitions Sculptural Felt International and Black Sheep, each touring the United Kingdom. Her numerous group exhibitions include FiberArt International at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts and the Museum of Quilts and Textiles in San Jose, Creatures: From Bigfoot to the Yeti Crab at the Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Idaho, Formex Stockholm 2008 in Stockholm, Sweden, and Transmission: Experience at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, Singapore. In 2015 Stephanie was honored as an Artist Laureate by Silicon Valley Creates, and she is the recipient of a Belle Foundation for Cultural Development grant as well as two Center for Cultural Innovation grants. She has taught at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Tennessee.
Felt Sculpture Workshop: Sculptor Stephanie Metz is known for her intriguing biomorphic wool sculptures and an approach to needle felting that reflects her background in figurative anatomy. The beginner through intermediate student will learn her techniques for creating three-dimensional, free-standing felt sculpture by compressing wool into felt using simple hand tools. Students will also learn about working with support armatures, manipulating surface finishes, and incorporating mixed media in this fast-paced workshop. Two days of one-hour classes will include demonstrations, leaving plenty of time for hands-on practice, ongoing discussion, and one-on-one problem-solving. Students will come away with a small finished piece or samples of techniques they can incorporate into their own work. Tools and materials will be supplied by the instructor for use and purchase.