The archaic quality of the present bronze is further enhanced by its extraordinary patina. As William Jeffett writes, working with the Parellada Foundry, "Miró chose a patina which preserved the rough and varied 'fire skin,' or the unfinished surface of the bronze metal as it appears when emerging from the mould. This technique produced a variegated surface pattern, green in color, which imitated the accidental variations in surface resulting from the high temperatures reached in casting. This was a calculated effect, however, requiring as much effort on the part of the foundry artisans as more classically inspired surfaces" ("A Note on the Techniques of Bronze Casting" in Joan Miró Sculpture (exhibition catalogue), South Bank Centre, London & traveling, 1989-90, p. 19).
Fig. 1 Constantin Brancusi, Bird in Space, 1925, marble, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
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