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.
We hope you will join us for a fantastic week! A Schedule of Events will be posted here when finalized.
Information below is a sample of our most recent symposium as reference.
Instructors from the 2023 Symposium
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.
Marcel was raised in Ibiza, Spain where he studied Blacksmithing. Later he moved to the Basque Country, Spain where he studied Stone carving and then moved to London, UK where he received his BA in Fine Arts Sculpture.
Stone Workshop: Marcel will introduce you to the different types of stone and its qualities. The use and maintenance of hand tools and power tools and how to visualize and realize your vision.
Alex has a background in glass and transitioned to metalworking and sculpture in 2016 when he started working at Splady Art Studios. He has since been brought on as a partner and co-owner of the business. The studio focuses on high end architectural fabrication and art services including: designing and making custom stands, armatures, and sculptures, as well as advising artists on technical aspects of their work. His workshop will explore working with wax models.
Wax Workshop: His workshop will explore working with wax models which you could later get casted if you so desire.
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