Stone Sculpture

A Heart of Stone - The Stone Sculpture from then to Today

The profession of stonemasonry is one of the oldest artisanal professions in the world. However, opposed to the stone carver the stone sculptor works rather creatively. He is less bound to geometrical shapes. What has changed regarding the former profession of stonemasonry to today? We investigate.

While in ancient Egypt, the sculptural tradition worked with hardest rocks such as granite, basalt, diorite, gabbro and porphyry, in ancient one used Greece mainly bronze and marble. The hard rock stood for eternity claim that sculpting wanted to implement for its sculptures and reliefs. The art tools that time were stone hammers with and without stem out of dolerite. For finer artworks the ancient Egyptians and Greeks used chisels made of bronze and moil chisels of hardened steel. For the last production step operations of a stone sculpture the ancient artists took a tooth iron to flatten the bumps. Nibbing of marble but mostly comes with a disintegration of the minerals, for which reason today's sculptors do not continue to apply this art tool any longer.

In the Middle Ages one then mainly worked with a fine-grained, yellowish grey limestone. Even sandstone was a popular material for sculptural purposes. The figures were worked out freely around one block. In modern times sculptors created plastic sketchy models made of wood or clay in order to present their customers a first impression of their subsequent work on the stone before they began their work,.

Today's stone sculpture is able to develop three-dimensional artworks directly and precisely according to the desired specifications. The sculptor shapes the stone from the outside inwards. It is now possible to use so-called profile millers for knocking out the contours of a sculpture. These are managed electronically. The physically demanding and time-consuming work with hammers and chisels thereby omits. The education of a stone sculptor is equal to the one of a stonemason. Here it is taught how to develop designs and how to converts them into models, how to pour off reliefs in forms, how to transfer models in stone through stippling and a lot more. The profession sculptor is a very creative profession which requires a considerable amount of creative talents.