PAT DOWNING METAL DESIGN

Contemporary Artist, Blacksmith and Instructor

Project Spotlights

San Diego Mission Baptismal Font

Pat recently completed a copper baptismal font cover  as part of the restoration of the baptistry at Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala. He used techniques similar to those that would have been used by coppersmiths during the late 18th century, when the Mission was built, he made his own tools to get the desired texture.

Starting with a 36-inch square sheet of copper, he used the ancient method of chasing and repousse to raise the dome and “chase” the flower pattern into the metal. The piece was done without a finish so that it will continue to patina naturally, changing color over time. The baptismal font is now on permanent display at the Mission.

UTC Sculpture

This unnamed sculpture was commissioned by Westfield University Town Center.  It was created from a single 10-foot by 3-foot sheet of copper using the Foldforming method. After folding the copper in half, Pat used traditional hammers and anvil as well as a power hammer, creating texture and moving the copper into the curves of the wave-like sculpture.
 
Once he had the general shape, he unfolded the copper using a variety of tools. And finally, multiple layers of blue and green patinas were applied giving the piece a water-like look. Vist here for photos and video of it being built.

Birdbath

This large, fanciful copper birdbath can be found at Westfield Univerity Town Center in La Jolla, Calif.

 

Made from a single 4-foot by 4-foot piece of copper,  it appears to change color as the sun moves throughout the day, reflecting many layers of color from oranges and reds to purples and blues.

 

For more information and to see photos of the birdbath being built, visit here.

Perfect Union

“Perfect Union,” was originally designed for San Diego Botanic Garden as part of their 2013 Sculpture in the Garden exhibit. It is now available for purchase.

 

Like all unions or relationships, you have to put in a certain amount of effort to make it work. At first you find two individual sculptures, each unique unto itself. But with a little effort, a single heart begins to take shape and the two sculptures become the “Perfect Union.”

 

Learn more about this sculpture here.

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Allure

One of Pat's favorite pieces, a Foldformed piece entitled “Allure,” won first place in the Sculpture and Three Dimensional Category at the 2011 Fallbrook Art Show.