With such groundbreaking projects as “Rubber Piano” and “Cheese Room” to his name, Cosimo Cavallaro is one of the most creative, innovative artists out there. We recently received an update from Cosimo on his current project: “Love Your Bean”, which consists of massive Jelly Beans he made for the West Hollywood Public Library lawn.
The first half of the build process for these Jelly Beans was covered in a previous blog, Chainsaws To Jelly Beans. Although the giant Precision Board PBLT-4 bean had already been shaped, turning it into a mold would still prove to be quite a feat. To accomplish this, Cosimo enlisted the help of famed boatbuilder and hydrofoil designer John Slattebo to spray and roll heavy-gauge fiberglass onto the Precision Board bean after it had been coated with polyester primer, polished with a wax release, and sprayed with gelcoat. Set into the fiberglass and allowed to cure with it were strengthening ribs made of 4″ PVC tubes cut in half to guard against possible warpage after removal due to the odd size of the molds.
Once each half of the mold was successfully removed from the Precision Board master plug, the wax release and gelcoat application was repeated again to each fiberglass tool. Within each tool, fiberglass was layed-up to a 1/2″ thickness, with 4″ PVC half-tube ribs inset to add structural strength in a fashion similar to the ribs in a boat hull. After curing for 48 hours, each half was removed and joined together by adding a 1″ flange inside one of the Jelly Bean halves, and joining the two pieces together with adhesive.
The 500 lb. Jelly Beans were then transported to well-known art restoration expert Jack Brogan to begin the process for paint. Jack started by sanding down the bean to a smooth finish and then applied polyester primer. More sanding followed, before lacquer paint was sprayed as a color base. Four to eight coats of polyurethane clearcoat were added to each bean, followed by polishing and waxing, to give these beans the vibrant finish you see here.
The Jelly Beans have recently taken up residence in their new permanent home on the West Hollywood Public Library lawn at of the beginning of September. If you’re in the area, be sure to stop by and see them in person and remind yourself of the unlimited possibilities of Precision Board Plus!
Check out more innovative projects from Cosimo on his website at: http://www.cosimocavallaro.com.