material study 2; sand casting in plaster

plaster cast from sand mould

plaster cast from sand mould

found cutoffs used to make impressions

found cutoffs used to make impressions


I was interested in sandcasting because of the expressive gritty texture of wet sand and potential for interesting relief patterns. The redeeming quality about sand, is that it is fairly inconsequential, because you can easily reset the sand and try again with a design that is desired. For this experiment I used masonry sand from a building supply store, and it was the right grit for the texture I was trying to achieve. The first plaster casting I did was a tile or random impressions made from cutoffs pieces of wood that were discarded. The sand got picked up by the plaster in a way that masked the plasters surface, more than I intended. I want to look into an adhesive that could be added to the sand (investigate how they cast bronze in sand, maybe call Skarpa) to figure out what material could reinforce the sand and potentially create more of a release. The experiment of the tile ended up somewhat of a failure because I did not put enough of a release when I pored plaster on top of it (to create the positive mould for concrete), and likely should have waited to ensure that plasters were different temperature (as they both had been pored that day within several hours). However, the burlap seems to work well as a way to reinforce the plaster positive mould.


Nivola, Constantino. “Le Corbusier: Research Directed toward Poetry.” JAE, vol. 32, no. 4, 1979, pp. 30–31. JSTOR,