Even with the mess and worry, there is a certain celebratory factor to mold making. Foremost the creation of the mold heralds the completion of the sculpture. But the more emotional side of mold making is the whole staff involvement, the related drama and risk, and fundamentally the acknowledgment that producing the mold is powerfully representative of being a producing sculptor and studio.
Only a few years ago when Steven was first attempting to produce his own work, the cost and complications of molding were a huge obstacle. One year for Christmas my parents, as a gift, helped him buy some rubber so that he could mold some sculptures. And there was a birthday party he was late for because the excitement of having finally been able to open a mold he had made was a better present than any he anticipated receiving at the party.
The mold holds the entire story of each sculpture. It protects each stroke of texture, every element of created character and evocative detail. A good mold protects the sculpture’s legacy and allows the piece to be produced perfectly for the run of the edition. A bad mold destroys the sculpture and is an expensive waste of time and materials. I’ve seen Steven boast about a mold he’s made with equal pride to any sculpture. The mold itself is itself a work of art - a series of technical hurdles and tests to champion.