Fonderia D'Arte Massimo Del Chiaro

Del Chiaro Art Connection

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Armature studies are prepared for large sculptures, for asymmetrical ones, for those having an off-centre of gravity, or for those which will be eventually mounted outdoors.
The armature is drawn up by an engineer who does the project himself or who checks the one which is created in the Foundry.
The armature has to ensure the sculpture’s absolute stability in each and every possible situation.
Sometimes, more than the armature itself, technical solutions have to be found for particular settings or arrangements, whether temporary or permanent.

The Ivan Theimer sculptures installed on the A83 Nantes-Niort Motorway near the Vallée du Lay close to Sainte-Hermine (called ‘Les Portes pour la Vandée’) needed a particularly impressive armature; one of the worst problems that had to be faced was the wind that could, and still can, reach 200 km in that area.
The four turtles with four columns arising out of them (almost eight metres high) required the planning of a specific armature in aisi 316l stainless steel. This branches out from the bottom of the turtles’ paws right up to the top of the columns and is held firmly in place by set screws in reinforced concrete foundation plinths.

The armature for the sculpture dedicated to Ayrton Senna (“Magic Senna”, see p. 276), realized by Richard Brixel on the tenth anniversary of the pilot’s death, was conceived by Massimo Del Chiaro. The unusual feature of this armature is its branching out over the whole sculpture from inside the front wheels right up to the flag pole; even the flag has its own inner steel structure.

Francesco Martani’s monument dedicated to Guglielmo Marconi, ‘Dialogo’, posed yet another problem: apart from the armature, the research, the planning and the insertion inside the ‘globe’, of a complex, computerized electrical system for the illumination by night of the sculpture.


  • During the realization of the armatures, at the workshop specialized in this field. Three of the columns’ armatures can be seen at the front, while in the background to the left, the original carapace of one of the turtles is visible and at the front to the right, the same again in bronze

  • A working design of the interior armature’s planning for the turtle’s interior

  • The complete armature of two of the four sculptures of the ‘The Doors for the Vandée’

  • The turtle’s steel armature

  • Another moment in the realization of the column’s armature. On the left, a part of the columns’ original copy

  • The bronze sculpture’s initial phase of assemblage on the armature

  • Another phase of the assembling of the armature of the bronze sculpture. From the left, Giovanni Genovesi (bronze craftsman) and Graziano Marchi (assistant bronze craftsman)

  • Ivan Theimer, ‘The Doors for the Vandée’, bronze (detail)

  • Ivan Theimer, ‘The Doors for the Vandée’, panoramic view

  • Massimo Del Chiaro while making the armature inside the car of sculpture “Magic Senna” by Richard Brixel

  • Massimo Del Chiaro together with Nicola Bigi (assistant bronze craftsman) while they fasten the armature to the bronze of the car

  • Richard Brixel checks the installation of the bronze on the armature

  • Francesco Martani, ‘Conversation’, bronze and steel, seen in daylight and at night

  • Assembling of the bronze on the armature in aisi 316l stainless steel: in between the armature, Giovanni Genovesi (bronze craftsman) can be seen, and in the background, from the left Massimo and Franco Del Chiaro

  • Finishing touches to the assemblage: from the left, the bronze craftsmen Mirco Maggi, Claudio Lombardi and Giovanni Marchi

  • Slide-away section for maintenance work with the lighting console

  • The bronze craftsman Lombardi inside the sculpture fixes the bronze to the armature

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