Wednesday Evening Open House for Individuals or Group Studio Visits


  What is Dr. Irving and Team Doing During Summer 2007

August Welding and Chasing
July Ready To Weld
April Second Figure Rebuilt
February 2007 Bronze Casting Done #1
Foundry Plans for Figure #2
Stages in Completing Monument Figures
How can I Help WIth Completing the First Monument Figure?
Review the Progression of the Final Phase of the Monument
Overview of the State of the Monument 2005-2007
  A Note on Dr. Irving's Heart Attack
  Steps to Finish the Monument?
What is the Estimated Completion Time of the Monument?
What are the Unveiling Plans?

How can I Help?


September 14, 2007
A stunning Day has Arrived
for the "Reaching Out"
Child Abuse Monument

One completed monument figure sits in the studio yard ready to be moved back to Toronto after 17 years of designing, planning, interviews, focus groups, sculptural model making, preliminary research workshops, fundraising, quilt square workshops across Canada, coast to coast school programs, gathering HandPrints from every Province, quilt square mold making, sculptural enlargement, fabricating quilt squares into enlarged monument, monument mold making, production of foundry lost waxes, fabrication of foundry sand cast patterns, bronze sand casting, ceramic shell lost wax bronze casting, bronze welding, metal detailing and chasing, sandblasting, polishing and bronze patina.

There is still time for you to contribute your hand as part of Dr. Irving's vision of a national visualization of our commitment to protect children.


The bronze "Reaching Out" monument is more than 10 feet high. Together with another figure the sculptural vignette will be nearly 30 feet across.


Adorning the "Reaching Out" figures are 300 quilt squares made in collaboration with Dr. Irving by survivors of child abuse, their supporters and school children from across Canada. Each quilt square is an amazing message of hope, inspiration, validation and acknowledgment.

The following web page documents the last two years of Dr. Irving's work at the bronze foundry and art fabrication studios.

At the Vietnam War Memorial in the fall of 1990 Dr. Irving made the decision to create a national child abuse memorial in the form of a major bronze monument.

Dr. Michael C. Irving sculpted the original sketches for the "Reaching Out" child abuse monument in spring of 1996.

Survivors from across Canada participated in workshops to add art images and writings to the sculpted quilt panels Dr. Irving made from their hands.

Barbara's square has images of a child weighted down by baggage and says, "Sexual abuse is too heavy for any child to carry through life."

At events from coast to coast school children gave Dr. Irving their drawn hands and messages for inclusion inside the child abuse monument figures as a national visualization committed to the protection of children.

More than 20 professional sculptors worked with Dr. Irving for longer than a decade to sculpt the monument in plaster and wax and eventually fabricate molds and patterns and turn the monument into bronze.

Nearly as much Dr. Irving's time and effort was expelled in fundraising and community outreach as in sculpting.

Dr. Irving and his wife Cheryl made the difficult decision to completely rebuild one of the monument figures after inferior production in an American foundry.

Dr. Irving worked directly with all aspects of production through the mold making fabrication and bronze casting processes.


There are two figures that comprise the "Reaching Out" child abuse monument. The bronzing of the first figure is completed. It will take more than a year to complete the molds and bronze foundry process of the second figure.

This give us time to continue creating a national visualization committed to the protection of children. We need your hand on a piece of paper for placement inside one of the two monument figures. Mail your hand outline to the "Reaching Out" monument. Your hand will be an important part of the "Reaching Out" monument through its presence inside the bronze figure and as part of the "Reaching Out Vision".


What was Dr. Irving and His Team Doing During the Summer of 2007

Sculpting Team Activities in Early September 2007

Brett Davis of Age of Bronze has nearly completed the application of patina on the back and front of the monument figure.

Heat and cupric nitrate solution is being applied to the hand to arrive at the blue green of aged bronze.

The last quilt square on the front of the monument figure is being patinaed.

Brett uses a torch to heat the bronze while he is applying the patina to the head of the monument.

Brett applies patina to first quilt square on back of monument figure.





Just prior to application of bronze patina Imantz Kruze views a portrait of his son that was sculpted by Dr. Michael C. Irving.




Brett applies final patina on first monument figure in September 2007.





Artist Brett Davis sculpts in bronze and stone. Brett has over 20 years of working experience in the field of patina that includes: consulting, research and development, restoration and preservation of patinas on historical and contemporary works of art. He also teaches the art, science and history of patinas using special techniques on various metallic and non metallic surfaces.





Sculpting team activities in Late August 2007 and Early September in preparation for final patina

The "Reaching Out" Child Abuse Monument is ready for patina by Brett Davis.

Dr. Irving is finishing the final application of a polishing of the bronze after the light sandblasting. This polish will help to give a luster to the patina that is to be applied the next day.

Welding, grinding, chasing and detailing are complete on the first monument figure. It is placed on a trailer to take to another studio for a light sandblasting before the patina is applied.

Eric and Vince are doing the final installation of head after monument is moved out of welding studio.

The first figure of the "Reaching Out" Child Abuse Monument is fully assembled at this point except for the final welding of the head to the base of the figure.

All the details of the quilt square are being examined prior to completion. Dr. Irving is using a fine chisel to touch up lettering in a survivor participant's quilt square. In a week's time the figure should be complete.

We now need funding to undertake to long process of completing the second Child Abuse Monument figure and to get the monument's message out to people. Contribute donations if you can. Tell others to make a donation to this incredible cause.

Vince Graham is working with Dr. Irving to move the Child Abuse Monument through its final stages of production. Vince is a sculptor and welder is who recognized as one of Canada's premier welders with fabrication and installation services for fine bronze sculpture. His work can be found in Canada, USA, Germany, Japan, Bermuda and Yugoslavia.

Dr. Irving chasing in quilt detail as monument goes into final stages of assembly. The monument is now weighing more than 3000 lbs. The head being placed on top of the quilt and shoulder panels weighs nearly 500 lbs.

The head will not fit out the door of the welding studio. The tip of the hands have a two inch clearance below the top of the door. The hands and shoulders will be welded on top of the quilts. The head will be fitted in place and then temporarily removed to be finally welded in place after the figure is move to just outside the welding studio.



Vince Graham setting up temporary weld support for head while Vlad does chasing in of texture on edges of quilt borders.






Vince prepares head for final attachment and welding.







Vince welding arm and hand in final assembly of first figure.







Vince welding shoulder to top of quilt.







Vince Graham contact details
12332 20 Side road
Limehouse, Ontario
Canada LOP 1H0
Ph: (905) 877-2035

August 4, 2007 Dr. Irving joins
the Final Assembly
of First Figure of
The Child Abuse Monument

The next stages of work on the Child Abuse Monument is to weld together over 50 components that have been cast in bronze. These components such as panels of six quilts, sides of the sleeves, shoulder and the head weigh upwards of 150 to 300 pounds. As the head, shoulders, hands and sleeve assemblies are fitted and welded together with all their components they will be weighing upwards of 600 to 1000 pounds. These large pieces have to be bent, pulled and hammered into shape to precisely fit each other and they have to be lifted, moved and worked into place.

The welding together, grinding and chasing in details of the first figure of the monument progressed from early August of 2007 and is expected to last into mid September.

The work entails the assembly of heavy pieces of bronze weighing from 150 lbs. to over 2000 lbs. each. Nearly two hundred feet of finely controlled welding is being done by Vince Graham and Dr. Irving. Grinding in hundreds of feet of quilt border patterns. Vlad, Stephen and Dr. Irving are reworking many thousands of crosshatch patterns along the edges and intersections of the quilt borders.

Each quilt square is being examined for details and lettering that are ground with fine dental tools or chased with chisels is bring the sculpture up to the highest quality in finishing.

Vlad chasing in details on quilts for back of figure and Dr. Irving is using DynaFile to grind in quilt border details. These are tedious time consuming processes that take up the better part of two months with a monument figure of this size and complexity.

Dr. Irving has specifically designed and ground chisels that replicate the patterns that were sculpted in the original wax quilt borders. With the right force these chisels actually engrave the pattern or texture into the actual bronze. This hammering and engraving process in bronze is called chasing.

Vince Graham welding end edge on front quilt.

Raw weld on hand and shoulder unit.

Dr. Irving grinding down edge weld on hand and should unit.

Finished weld after detail has been chased back in.

Vlad, Dr. Irving and Stephen using chisels and hammers to chase in quilt border details.

The end panels of the monument figure have been welding together and are stored under tarps to protect the surface from being patinaed by the rain.


July 2007 we started the final welding for one of the Monument figures.

That's right! After 12 years of planning, workshops, sculpting and foundry work we are bringing one monument figure into its final stages of sculpting and fabrication. For several weeks Vince will fit weld together 57 panels and components into one 11 by 15 foot bronze figure. Then in August Michael and Vlad will help as these heavy units are moved and set up for the grinding and chasing process.


The components of the head have started to be welded together for later welding.

Shoulder panels are ready to weld.

April 2007 after being irreparably damaged in an American foundry The Second child abuse Monument figure is completely rebuilt

In the summer of 2005 we found out the quality of the work of one of the Monument figures was gravely compromised through an inferior choice of casting processes. After so many years of work we had to ask, "Do we proceed with what we have even though it is inferior or do we rebuild the quilts of the figure from the original molds of each participants work?" It was a major decision in terms of time and commitment. How could we ever do this?

Andrew Krawczyk owner of LP Bronze International came to our rescue. He worked out a plan with Dr. Irving to cast the figures and gave the space to rebuild the damaged art work from scratch. Eighteen months later Dr. Irving and his team completed a remarkable job of rebuilding a new and finely detailed Monument figure.


February 2007 one of the
Child Abuse Monument Figures
is Completely Cast in Bronze

The last of 57 large pieces of large bronze was cast in the art foundry.


Foundry Plans for the Second Monument Figure
We need to raise several hundred thousand more dollars before we can proceed with casting the second monument figure into bronze. Donations will greatly help with this work.

Wish us luck. Contribute donations if you can. Tell others to make a donation to this incredible cause.


Final Stages in Completing The Child Abuse Monument


Completion of Figure #1 - Done

1. Weld together figure. Done

2. Clean up welds, regrind in details. Done

3. Lightly sand blast figure. Done

4. Polish figure. Done

5. Patina figure. Done

Completion of Figure #2 - In Progress

1. Finish moulds of quilt squares.

2. Cast quilt squares into bronze.

3. Cast 4 side panels into bronze.

4. Weld together figure.

5. Clean up welds and regrind in details.

3. Lightly sand blast figure.

4. Polish figure.

6. Patina figure



Can I help with completing the building of the Child Abuse Monument?

Collecting HandPrints to place inside the Child Abuse Monument can be a great contribution for helping to create a national visualization for how we want the world to be for children. All we ask is for an outline of a hand to be placed on a piece of paper and for a message to be written about creating the world for children or a message of support for survivors. We will bundle and shrink wrap all these hands and messages and place them inside the bronze monument figures. Examples of the HandPrints collected to date are on the left side of many of the pages of this web side. To read more about the "Helping Hands" Campaign go to the "Helping Hand" web page.



Review the Progression of the Final Phase of the Monument

First an overview of the final steps in creating the monument is presented.

This is followed by a progression timeline in reverse chronological order. You will following our story back from the spring of 2007 to the winter of 2006.


Overview of State of the Monument 2005-2007
Thank you for visiting us during the final stages of building the bronze Monument. So much is happening at this important and critical stage of making and casting the Child Abuse Monument that Dr. Irving will be giving a frequent update throughout 2007.

By June of 2000 all of the original work was done in plaster and wax of sculpting the original patterns for two figures and quilt squares for the Child Abuse Monument.

Initially one of the figures (Figure #2) went to an American bronze foundry but they used a crude sand cast process for casting the quilts rather than a lost wax ceramic shell casting process as they had originally contracted with us. Rather than accept a less than optimal work of art Dr. Irving decided to resculpt the quilts of this figure.

Progression of Figure One
In the fall of 2005 BLP Bronze International a Canadian foundry was paid in full to cast another one of the figures (Figure #1) into bronze.

Many cracks developed in the wax quilts and quilt boarders of monument figure #1 from sitting in changing temperatures and humidity environments for over 5 years. Over the fall of 2005 and the winter and spring of 2006 O'Puck, Cheryl, Richard, Bruce and Dr. Irving cleaned these wax quilt borders up and made silicone molds in preparation for lost wax casting of one of the monument figure's 150 quilt squares.

In the summer of 2006 Vlad, Richard and Dr. Irving made negative urethane molds and positive Fiberglas patterns in preparation for sand casting both of the monument figures' heads, sleeves arms and hands.

A monumental step occurred in making the Child Abuse Monument over the fall of 2006. Eric, Randy, Arnold, O'Puck and Dr. Irving sand cast 42 large bronze components for two of the monument figures at the BLP Bronze International foundry.

Through the fall and the beginning of winter of 2006 Vlad, Richard and Dr. Irving were doing the heavy work of sandblasting, grinding and shaping the bronze pieces of the head, shoulders, hands and sleeves of one of the bronze figures and started to assemble and weld them. By mid-winter of 2007 this first figure was fully cast into nearly 60 bronze components.

During the Summer of 2007 Dr. Irving guided the first figure through the welding, chasing, redetailing and patinaing process. Donations will be of great value to us to move along the next stage of building the Child Abuse Monument.

Progression of Figure Two
From February 2006 through December of 2006 O'Puck, Richard, Steve, Vlad, Dr. Irving and drop in volunteers cleaned up and prepared 150 wax quilt squares for rebuilding the second monument figure that was damaged at the U.S. foundry.

From December of 2006 to Mid-March of 2007 Vlad, Richard, Steve and Dr. Irving cleaned up the details of the borders of quilt panel and worked all the wax quilt squares of the second monument figure into their respective quilt borders.

Over the months of January, February and March the team cleaned up the details of the borders of quilt panels in preparation for the final stage of lost wax casting the second Monument figure. As each quilt panel was completed a first protective layer of silicon mould was applied to the 27 finished quilt panels. By mid-march the twenty-seven panels were completed and the first layers of silicon molds were applied.

A Great Thanks to All
The team of sculpting volunteers in the studio were an amazing help in assisting with the work in completing the Child Abuse Monument figures. A heart felt thank you goes out to all who brought the monument along.

Now that the damaged figure is rebuilt and the first figure is completely cast in bronze we are no longer doing Volunteer Sculpting Days in the BLP International studios.

We are grateful to all the volunteers who contributed to this amazing accomplishment.

Much preliminary work occurs in
the foundry before the bronze
is heated to a molten metal.










Casting of the first
"Reaching Out" Monument
figure is taking place at the
BLP Foundry in Toronto
over 2005, 2006 and 2007.


August 21 to September 21, 2006

Over these four weeks O'Puck was making molds and doing pattern work for BLP Bronze. Richard, Vlad and Dr. Irving were making fiberglass foundry patterns of the twelve sleeve components; three shoulder and hand components and two patterns of the head and neck. These component patterns are to be used for the bronze sand casting process. Each week Eric in the foundry is casting several of these component patterns into bronze.

After Dr. Irving's heart attack in June he is no longer doing the Evening or Saturday Volunteer Sculpting Days. Sculpting volunteers are welcome to work in the studio Monday to Fridays from 9 am to 5 pm.

The team of sculpting volunteers in the studio have been an amazing help in assisting with the work in completing the Child Abuse Monument figures.


July 14 to August 18, 2006

Over these four weeks O'Puck continued to work on the set of four Mandalas with Dr. Irving primarily serving as supervisor and teacher to O'Puck's sculpting. O'Puck made a major leap forward in his sculpting training by taking on the sculpting of a relief figure of Saint Santo Nino de Atocho under the supervision of Dr. Irving.

Towards the end of July Richard, Vlad and Dr. Irving finished the clean up of the wax quilt squares for the rebuilding of the second damaged Child Abuse Monument figure. This is a landmark step in resculpting this figure.

Vlad, Richard and Dr. Irving spent one week making urethane rubber molds of the the two eight-foot sleeves of the Child Abuse Monument figures. Each of the sleeves were divided into six mold sections in order to take into account the shape of undercut lines and the size of casting boxes in the foundry.

In a second week Vlad, Richard and Dr. Irving made the twelve mother molds to support the urethane sleeve component molds. Taking these mold patterns off the Monument master was a major milestone in casting both Monument figure -- all the component molds in preparation for bronze casting the head, shoulders, arms, hands and sleeves are completed.


July 3 to 14, 2006

Over these two weeks O'Puck made molds and did pattern work for BLP Bronze. Richard, Vlad and a new sculpting volunteer Sherry did undercuts to the hands and art work on wax quilt square for rebuilding the second Monument figure. It is remarkable how much work they have accomplished over the past month. Dr. Irving worked in the foundry for the first week on a rose and cross sculpture for BLP Bronze and is working with another artist, Mike Maston, on a memorial relief portrait of a man, and a separate portrait of a woman Sara Conner. The second week Dr. Irving went to a cottage for the week and the rest of the sculpting team kept up the studio work.

Mike Maston, O'Puck and Richard worked together on sculpting leaves and wolf prints for a plaque for the City of Markham. The leaves were stylized and looked quite nice. Mike Maston sculpting a Christ figure with that went with a set of four Mandalas O'Puck and Dr. Irving are preparing for BLP Bronze.



June 19 to 23, 2006

This week of O'Puck made molds and did pattern work for BLP Bronze. Richard and a new sculpting volunteer Vlad did undercuts to the hands and art work on wax quilt squares for rebuilding the second Monument figure. Dr. Irving worked in the foundry on Thursday and Friday to meet with the team on a second version of the sculpture for OCE (Ontario Centres of Excellence). Dr. Irving also continued working on a cross and roses that were being worked on just before his heart attack. O'Puck, Elder Vern Harper-Asin and Dr. Irving participated with the Wakinyan Awasis Sculpture Park model at The Buffalo Jump Unity Festival as part of National Aboriginal Day on Wednesday June 21 at Trinity Bellwoods Park.


May 6 to June 16, 2006

Beginning this week reports became scattered during this time as the activities and hours in the foundry became quite hectic. The overwork, stress and hectic pace resulted in a Dr. Irving experiencing a heart attack.


A short note on my heart attack

It is with great pleasure and appreciation that I am here today and with strength and a sense of support from others I move forward through this challenging and inspiring passage.

Saturday, June 10, 2006 I had a heart attack and fortunately had the where-with-all to get aspirin in me as it was happening and my wife got me to a hospital in a very short time. I began a second heart attack on Monday which felt worse than the first and it vividly illustrated to me that I have to take seriously the condition I have created with my relationship to food, exercise and stress. A couple of more angina attacks were just footnotes on the basic message.

In the end the heart damage was not too bad and on Thursday I had an angioplasty with three stents. I was told before hand that because of some irregularities to the arteries of my heart and the location of the blockages in the arteries it was to be a particularly difficult angioplasty and stenting that may end up having to move up into being a double by-pass surgery.

I received tremendous support over the week from many people - to know others care so much.

My elder, Vern Harper-Asin, did ceremony and medicine with me on Tuesday. We did prayers for the Doctor's hands in the evening before and morning of the surgery. Buffalo spirits filled my room for three days. I brought my medicine bundles and ceremonial artifacts with me to the operation room at Toronto General Hospital, one of the best hospitals in the world for the procedures I needed. The nurses set up a small alter near the operating table with my artifacts and just before they began the surgery they asked if I would like to have my two medicine bundles with me. They placed them on top of my heart, where they rested for the entire angioplasty and stenting. Buffalo spirits calmly stood about the operating room and one peaceful buffalo entered my body and kept his spirit completely filling me over the two hour procedure. A child and mother buffalo stayed at my side the whole time. I was awake and alert for the duration of the procedure and was watching it on TV monitors much of the time. A few times when they were expanding the balloons, placing in the stents or expanding them the chest pains increased or my fear grew. I asked for and received assurance when I floated a bit and felt like I might be beginning to loose it. Mostly I felt comforted and assured that what needed to happen was happening. Everything went extraordinarily well.

In the bigger picture this heart attack is a gift as a major wake up call. The Creator is telling me to make some significant life style changes or accept the inevitability of an early and untimely trip to the other side.

My wife and friends have been remarkable in supporting me, and the worry and fear of my children emphasizes the degree to which I must stay here for them.

I will be slowly moving back into work and social and community commitments.

Include me, my heart and my commitment to permanently make dramatic and significant lifestyle changes in your prayers.


Michael (June 19, 2006)
You may send me notes of support to

Update on my recovery from heart disease. As of January, 2007 I am walking and jogging 20 miles a week and bike riding another 50 miles a week. I do relaxation exercises, meditations and visualizations a few times a day. I am eating a Dr. Dear Ornish vegetarian type diet that has 10% fat. My cholesterol has lowered more than 70%. Both my LDL and HDL are in great ranges. I have lost 70 lbs. It will likely be several years before I sufficiently reverse the heart disease I got myself into.

Thanks again for your support.


P.S. I am pleased to report an update on my heart recovery in the summer of 2007 can be seen on an article by Canada Running Series.


April 30 to May 6, 2006

This is a week of O'Puck making molds and Dr. Irving cleaning up and refining sculptures and foundry patterns for BLP Bronze and sculpting the Plasticine stage of a sculpture for OCE (Ontario Centres of Excellence). Dr. Irving is finishing the bronze casting of the four quilt panel made of the HandPrints from the Branksome Hall six grade art class and preparing for the Exhibition Day at Branksome Hall. If O'Puck and Dr. Irving have time between all these activities they will work on more of the foundry patterns for the hands and arms of the Child Abuse Survivor Monument. Richard will be casting waxes of the quilt square for most of the week.

Saturday will be another Volunteer Sculpting Day and volunteers are welcome to come from noon to six p.m..


April 23 to 29, 2006

This was a remarkable landmark week in the foundry. By mid-week we were pouring the first bronze for one of the Monument figures.

Monday and Tuesday O'Puck and Dr. Irving continue Realigning the edges of the fiberglass patterns for the three components of one of the hands and shoulders of the figures. Tuesday morning they made foam filling cores for the sand casting process of the hand and shoulder components. On Tuesday afternoon Eric and Dr. Irving made one half of sand cast mold of the underside of one of the hand in a molding box. Finishing this had the clear feeling of an epic moment in the making of the Child Abuse Survivor Monument -- it meant that pouring bronze would be happening the next day.

On Wednesday morning Eric, as soon as an additional molding box was available Eric finished making the sand cast mold of the underside of the hand. Before lunch the sand cast molding box was opened and the fiberglass form of the hand component was removed and the mold cleaned up. The molding box was reassembled waiting for bronze to be heated to a melting point after lunch.

In the early afternoon of Wednesday April 26, 2006 the sand cast mold of a hand component was put in place near the furnace and Arnold brought the bronze up to more than two thousand degree Fahrenheit and a monumental transition in building the Child Abuse Survivor Monument took place.


Activities and Events Over the Week of April 16 to April 22, 2006.

Over the week of April 16 to 22. O'Puck and Dr. Irving continued to focus on making resin forms that Eric at BLP Bronze will use for casting the hands, shoulders and head will have to start being made. Richard continued to cast wax quilt squares for the second Monument Figure. Bronze components of the Child Abuse Monument in place.

Tuesday O'Puck and Dr. Irving went to the Aboriginal Affairs Committee Meeting at Toronto City Hall to continue promoting the Wakinyan Awasis sacred site and sculpture park.

Wednesday Richard cast 6 quilt square in wax. Five were excellent casts and one had some air bubbles on the surface so it was set aside to be recast on Thursday. O'Puck and Dr. Irving did fiberglass lay ups for the underside of one of the hand and part of the top of the shoulder. Dr. Irving, Mustapha, George and Eric brainstormed the casting process for making a 36 inch bronze. With all of its curves and twists the piece is complicate to sand cast. The approach to sand casting influences the most appropriate materials for Dr. Irving to sculpt and work in.

O'Puck and Dr. Irving spent some time making a urethane molds for a foundry patterns for a bronze vase. Dr. Irving spent some time talking with Bret Davis of Age of Bronze about the patina for 15 stages of the cross and about approaching the patina on the large Child Abuse Monument. Bret is going to do a patina workshop with Bruce Armstrong, O'Puck and Dr. Irving at the BLP Bronze foundry in preparation for the patina on the Child Abuse Monument.

Thursday O'Puck poured the supporting plaster mother mold for the urethane mold we made on Wednesday. Richard Organized the group of quilt squares on the panel of the front of the second Monument figure that we are rebuilding. The quilt square were placed in groupings for their respective 11 panels. All the sculpted quilt squares on the front of the Monument have now been cast by Richard. He is working on the quilt squares for the back. Due to the vertical and horizontal curve of the Monument figures there are 16 quilt panels on the back. It ends up being 63 quilt square comprising the front of each figure and 87 quilt squares making up the quilt of the back of the figure.

The smell of the resin was bothers some people in rooms near the area the fiberglass casting patterns were being laid up in, so O'Puck spent the morning moving the fiberglass workstation and all its molds and material to a more remote and suitably ventilated area of the foundry. In the afternoon O'Puck sanded and cleaned up the surface of the three fiberglass lay ups that have been made.

Dr. Irving did designing and material plans for the upcoming Excellence sculpture. He met with Eric to go over the fiberglass and resin casting patterns. When the fiberglass patterns were pulled out of the urethane mold the fiberglass pieces each shrank and warped to different degrees. To have the least amount of working in welding the components together after casting them in bronze they needed to be sculpted to bet a more perfect alignment to the edges of the pieces. It is easier to build up a surface on the fiberglass than to shave the fiberglass down. Much of the work in realigning the edges was accomplished with auto body filler or "bondo". The body filler is an interesting sculpting material. It is made of nine hollow glass beads that are added to liquid resin until it becomes a thick paste. A catalyst is added to the past and there is a short time to use it before it begins to harden and is no longer sticky and malleable.

Friday O'Puck and Dr. Irving spent the day realigning the edges of the fiberglass patterns for the three components of one of the hands and shoulders of the figures.

Saturday was a Volunteer Sculpting Day and Nina came in and mounted her quilt square into the six panel quilt that it goes with in the second Monument figure. Saturday Dr. Irving worked on a group of designs for an Exhibition he is having in June.

Activities and Events Over the Week of April 10 to April 16, 2006.

The week of April 10 to 16 was filled with activities. The week will began with preparing Child Abuse Monument bronze casts of HandPrints for Branksome Hall and preparations for the tour. The tour took place on Tuesday and the remaining of the week was spent on a complete organization of quilt squares and HandPrints for rebuilding the second Monument figure. Near the end of the week we began to make resin forms that Eric at BLP Bronze will use for casting the hands, shoulders and head will have to start being made.

On Monday Richard continued making waxes and O'Puck removed the last of the duplicate wax quilt squares from the first Monument figure that will need to be placed on the second Monument figure. Richard cast 3 plain wax quilt square panels and four wax quilt squares. Andrew printed out all the PhotoShop files of the 10 by 10 inch HandPrints that will need to be traced onto wax quilt squares for the second Monument Figure.

Eric cast bronze quilt border figures on Monday for the Branksome Hall students. Dr. Irving ground and polished the bronze quilt border figures. These bronze quilt border figure are quite nice and would be good memorabilia for selling from our web site -- we need to do a costing and figure out shipping. A large part of the Monday for Dr. Irving was devoted to sculpting and assembling a four panel wax HandPrint quilt that will be cast into bronze for mounting at Branksome Hall in their new atrium. O'Puck and Richard spent the second half of the day preparing the studio, Monument components and other art work for the Branksome Hall tour. O'Puck and Dr. Irving went over the presentation and demonstrations that we are going to give on monument making. Dr. Irving went over a last review of the tour with Eric in the foundry and the Branksome Hall teacher, Jazz Roy.

The Tuesday Branksome Hall tour to the foundry and Monument studio was amazing. Mustapha Bouabbella, Vice-president Manufacturing took the girl on a foundry tour of pattern making, moldings, casting and pouring and finishing. They viewed the sand cast process, where Eric demonstrated the first stages of four of the Branksome Hall student's wax HandPrints cast into sand molds. After this presentation the students went to different areas of the foundry to observe Arnold pour the molten bronze into the sand cast molds. Students had personal box/cartons filled with sand sculpting material to take back to school for use to sculpt a work of art.

The students had a tour of the art studio and reviewed Monument Making with Dr. Irving. They looked at monument making through the stages of public consultation, conceptualizing designs, sketching and model making, enlarging and sculpting and mold making and foundry preparation. The group reviewed the Wakinyan Awasis model for a proposed sacred site to honour the spirit of the child. Concepts of visualizing, visualizations and visioning were explored. The tour went to the warehouse room that was filled with the array of disassembled Styrofoam and wax components of the first Monument figure.

In Dr. Irving's sculpting studio the students were guided through the creation of the Child Abuse Monument from the mid-eighties to the mid-nineties of conceptualization and community consultation. We looked at the first 1/18 th size Plasticine, plaster and bronze models for the final figure. Discussed the sculpting of the 1/3 size figure and its functions in expanding to a full size 11 ft. Monument with 150 quilt squares. The full size head, shoulders, arms and hands were on display in the studio with accompanying rubber molds and mother molds.

Using a the small quilt borders with "Reaching Out figures Dr. Irving used visual component samples of each step to review: the sculpting and casting process from sculpting the wax figure, pouring the rubber mold, casting the foundry pattern, making the casting mold, casting and cleaning up the bronze. After this concise visual review presentation Dr. Irving gave each of the students and the adults on the tour one of the bronzes that he and Eric made the previous day.

Tuesday afternoon, Wednesday and Thursday Richard kept casting wax quilt squares. To get the best cast and prevent air bubbles in the wax Richard has refined the process to cleaning the Urethane mold with sculpting tools, brushes and methyl hydrate; spraying the molds with a universal mold release and using a brush to apply a de-bubbling agent; preheating heating the rubber molds in our low heat oven to about 130 degrees Fahrenheit and applying the wax at about 185 to 190 degrees for the first coat and 170 to 180 degrees for subsequent coats. To know the thickness of the wax that is building up on the molds Richard has covered one of Dr. Irving's graphics art light boxes with a sheet of clear plastic and place the molds on the light box. Any areas of the light box that are not covered by a mold is covered with a strip of plywood to prevent the bright light from impeding a good view of the mold and wax. The result is that areas where the wax is still thin on the mold shine as a light golden brown rather than a dark brown like the built up areas. Our goal is to get a wax quilt square that is slightly over 1/4 inch thick.

Wednesday and Thursday morning O'Puck and Dr. Irving continued to catalogue and organize the quilt squares and HandPrints for rebuilding the second Monument figure. Part of Wednesday afternoon was spent with removing quilt squares and HandPrints from the panels of the first Monument figure. The remainder of Wednesday afternoon involved setting up a work area in one of the foundry warehouse areas to do the fiberglass work for making the foundry sand cast patterns. Three sets of tests for process approach and thickness samples of the fiberglass was done near the end of the day on Wednesday.

Late Thursday morning and Thursday afternoon were devoted to doing the fiberglass lay ups. The first lay up in the morning was not satisfactory so it was pulled and discarded and the mold was left to have the remaining resin catalyze and harden. While the resin was hardening fiberglass matt was torn into appropriate sizes and the edges were frayed in preparation for lay ups. O'Puck and Dr. Irving started the first two lay ups of fiberglass and resin in the afternoon and Dr. Irving stayed into the evening to do the third layer of lay up and trim the fiberglass before it got extremely hard. Near the end of the day Mustapha stopped by to talk about an abstract sculpture he would like sculpted next week. Dr. Irving went over the process for approaching the piece with O'Puck and set out the timeline and stages for executing the work.

Friday was a day off.

On Saturday Dr. Irving sculpted in the undercuts on two quilt squares and cleaned up the three HandPrints for panel number 10 of the 27 quilt square panel for the second Monument figure. These five wax squares were fabricated onto quilt panel number 10 and Nina was contacted about fabricating her square into this panel following Friday. This makes the first panel of the second Monument figure that is being resculpted after being damaged and lost in the foundry in the States. One down and twenty six to go.


Activities and Events Over the Week of April 2 to April 9, 2006.

Over the weekend, April 1 and 2nd, Jazz Roy and her dad translated four of the HandPrints made by Branksome Hall six graders into French. Dr. Irving took the four HandPrints which were 81/2 by 11 inches and traced and reworked them to fit on the 10 by 10 inch quilt squares of the Monument quilts. Richard pour waxes for these HandPrints to be transferred to and on Saturday April 9 O'Puck, Vern and Dr. Irving inscribed the Branksome Hall HandPrints onto the wax squares and carved them into the squares. What we did not finish on Saturday Dr. Irving carved in on Wednesday. While we were carving HandPrints in wax quilt squares Jesse was in the studio converting a large restaurant fridge into a thermostatically controlled warmer over for our molds and waxes.

Mike and Samir in the Service Department of BLP Bronze volunteered some time to scan, clean up and resize the HandPrints from Branksome Hall.

Monday April 3 we did some cleaning up from the previous week's mold making -- plaster of Paris work makes such a mess. Tuesday and Wednesday Puck and Dr. Irving patinaed cast paper. On Thursday Cheryl took the cast paper quilt up to Casting Impressions to have framed.

Richard made wax quilt squares most of the week and on and off over the week Dr. Irving cut out duplicate squares and quilt squares that are going to be remelted and reused from the first Monument figure.

On Tuesday April 4 Dr. Irving went through all of the drawings of the two Monument figures and identified quilt squares that we already had and quilt squares that needed to be duplicated.

On Wednesday and Thursday O'Puck and Richard moved all the bronze quilts that had been damaged on the second Monument figure and arranged them with their rubber molds and with the quilt panels from the first Monument figure that new waxes are going to be worked into.

One Thursday Evan from the Sales Department of BLP Bronze set up a series of open houses and workshops for the Monument studio with the City of Toronto Heritage Days.

Thursday Jazz Roy had a phone call with further planning for the Branksome Hall field trip. Dr. Irving had a meeting with Andrew Krawczyk about the field trip as well and Andrew and Dr. Irving brainstormed some about approaches to our remaining fundraising needs.

Friday Mustapha and Dr. Irving had some discussions about the Branksome Hall field trip, Mustapha is going to give the foundry tour and Dr. Irving am going to give a sculpting studios tour. Dr. Irving spoke with Eric in the foundry about how is is going to approach the making sand cast mold boxes and bronze pouring for the field trip and Eric bronze cast a series of Monument keepsake figure for the visiting six graders. The cast actually came out quilt well and we will soon be offering them for sale through our web site.

On Friday O'Puck cut out 16 duplicate wax quilt squares from the first Monument figure.

I tried a variety of ways to do tracings of the HandPrints on the damaged second bronze figure that will need to be resculpted. Nothing worked to pick up the detail without a long and complicated process. Dr. Irving finally used O'Puck's digital camera to shoot pictures of the bronze HandPrints. Andrew in the graphics department of BLP set up an Apple computer with PhotoShop to resize and cleanup the pictures in order to use them for tracing patterns for sculpting onto quilt squares. Dr. Irving converted to colour pictures to grayscale, used brightness and contrast until the hand outlines and writing showed up best and then resized and reskewed them to become 10 by 10 inch squares. It is likely this process is going to save us nearly a week in salvaging and resculpting the damaged HandPrints form the second Monument figure.

Activities and Events Over the Week of March 27 to April 1, 2006.

On Sunday we received a $100.00 donation from Deana in Jacksboro, TX. We are grateful for this donation and it will be dedicated to staff for resculpting the second Monument figure. Thanks Deana.

Last week Puck, Richard and Dr. Irving made the final silicone rubber molds for the quilt squares for the first Monument figure. This week we are making plaster mother molds to hold the shape and form of the silicone molds that were made last week.

Tuesday Dr. Irving went to Branksome Hall to make HandPrint messages for inside the Monument with the six grade art classes of Jazz Roy. Their HandPrint messages were impressive and again the insights and energy of youth were inspiring about the compassion and motivation that people can have in desiring to make a better world. Two of the Branksome Hall HandPrint are going to be sculpted into the second Monument figure that we are working on. The whole group of Branksome Hall HandPrints will be bundled, shrink-wrapped and placed permanently inside one of the finished bronze Monument figures like other HandPrints from our Helping Hands Campaign Dr. Irving will have to get the HandPrints scanned and posted on a Branksome Hall web page on our site.

Tuesday Dr. Irving went to the Birch Ave. Monument mold storage room with Richard and organized and picked up all the the quilt square molds for rebuilding the second Monument figure. Casting Impressions called and a large cast paper quilt for fundraising activities is finished being pressed and ready for pick up. This six square quilt will need to be painted with an acrylic patina and framed for the client. The profit we make on the quilt will give us enough funds to fabricate some of the quilt squares into the second Monument figure that we are rebuilding.

Tuesday night Cheryl, Zac and Dr. Irving spent time with the HandPrints from Branksome Hall and pick out a few to go on the second Monument figure. It is so amazing to look at the HandPrints and read the depth of understanding, insight and hope of children.

First thing Wednesday morning before school Dr. Irving talked with Jazz Roy, the art teacher at Branksome Hall about the HandPrints we choose and the next steps with permission forms and editing. Dr. Irving also spoke with Andrew in the Graphics Art Department at the foundry on Wednesday morning about scanning the HandPrints from Branksome Hall. He is going to set up a scanner within the foundry computer network for us and Dr. Irving will have to track down someone to volunteer some time to do the scanning'

Wednesday morning discussed upcoming fundraising steps and strategies with Will Andras. We need to review and distribute the list of patrons and donors that have been identified as possibly interested or supportive. It is such an important project to complete and final funding is so critical at this stage. We do have a remarkable and committed fundraising team at this stage and they have some significant work ahead of them over the next while.

Monday Richard, Puck and Dr. Irving made five plaster mother molds to support and hold the form of the silicon rubber molds of six panel quilts and borders. Wednesday we should finish the remaining three. That will make all the quilt squares for the first Monument figure to be transferred into molds for making the casting waxes for the lost wax bronze process.

Wednesday we started making the support crates for moving and storing these last silicone quilt square molds. We will continue with these on Thursday and Friday. What and extraordinary milestone in building the Monument.

Wednesday Cheryl picked up a six panel cast paper quilt from Casting Impressions. It was an exceptional cast in terms of detail and finish. Dr. Irving will be doing the acrylic patina on it over Friday, Saturday and Monday. At the same time Dr. Irving patinaed the cast paper Monument quilt he will also be patinaing a large mother and child portrait of his and a sitting woman nude. O'Puck will be helping Dr. Irving with these so O'Puck can learn the acrylic patina process.

Dr. Irving worked with Richard Wednesday afternoon to make five wax castings of the quilt squares for the second Monument. Four of the wax casting came out well and one had some air bubble flaws so it will need to be poured again. These are the first waxes for Richard to pour on his own and he did a very good job of them. There is much to lean in skill of mold preparation, wax temperature, building up the wax and demoulding it. Richard looks like he is going to be quite competent with it. It is interesting to see with Richard how looking at and working with the quilt squares affects people. The quilt squares are all so powerful and story telling. There is much about the issues of abuse to learn in having contact with the squares.

On Thursday O'Puck, Richard and Dr. Irving finished the plaster mother molds and began opening up the molds from over the week. The detail that the silicon rubber is able to pick up is remarkable. The rubber finds its way into some cracks that are not even noticeable in the quilt square borders; so the thin flanges that are created need to be cleaned up by pulling them off, scrapping them with the edge of a sharp tool or cutting them off with small scissors.

Two of Richard's waxes from Wednesday had some problems of separating as they were pulled out of the molds on Thursday morning so Dr. Irving used a fine cutting blade on a foredom flexible shaft to remove some mold overhangs that were getting in the way. Richard redid those waxes and poured waxes for another four quilt squares for the second Monument figure. We have been gathering all the odd assortments of wax around the studios to do the recasting of 100 quilt squares for the second figure. We are using a ratio of 40 percent victory brown sculpture wax and 60 percent pink jewelry investment casting wax beads by weight to make casts of the quilt squares to fit into the quilt borders. This gives us a wax that is hard enough to work into the quilt borders without leaving our fingerprints or tool marks as the pieces are held and moved around. Also if we put the wax quilt squares in an "incubator box" for a time they soften up enough to sculpt in undercuts and clean up any imperfections.

Mustapha from BLP Bronze stopped by the sculpting studio to water some of his garden plants we are keeping in the windows and we talked about some of the timeline issues for the Monument and casting.

Now that all of the quilt panels for the first Monument figure have had casting molds made of them we are going to start reusing the borders of the quilt panels to remake the damaged second figure. We have been very protective of keeping the temperature of the quilt panels stable because if the temperature goes up and down the quilts and borders open up with cracks. We are going to use this property now to get the quilts and borders to crack so that we will be able to pull the quilt squares out from the first Monument figure to have reinserted the quilt squares for the second Monument figure. So today, we started moving the quilt panels into are area of the foundry warehouse where the temperature had dramatic fluctuations. We should know in a few days if this helps us; if it does it will actually save much time and prevent some significant wax damage and repair that we were expecting to deal with.

Friday was such a long day with getting the final silicon rubber cleaned after opening the quilt panel molds and finishing the crating. O'Puck took some photos of the final work stages for the mold making.

Saturday Dr. Irving was in the foundry art studio from noon to six p.m. to work with volunteers to clean up undercuts on the quilt squares for the second Monument figure that we are rebuilding. Mike from BLP Bronze came in to volunteer. He scanned the HandPrints that were made by the grade six classes at Branksome Hall. Dr. Irving did paper work on the height and positioning of each of the new quilt squares that have to be put into the new quilt panels for rebuilding the second Monument figure. The quilt squares will be placed in a position from one to eight feet in height. All the wax quilt squares at six, seven and eight feet in height are primarily undercut from the bottom and sides so that when looking up at the final bronze there will be the most esthetic sense of the artwork standing out from the quilt surface. Quilt square at three, two and one feet are undercut from the top and sides to assist with visual impact. Whereas, quilt squares at four and five feet will be undercut from all sides.

Dr. Irving completed the undercuts on three quilt squares and did most of the undercutting on on another one. On the last piece there was detail that needed to be resculpted from air bubbles in the wax and when the undercutting was applied a significant amount of sculpting needed to be done due to the detailing in the background surface of the quilt square. Dr. Irving used a jewelers magnifying glasses that are worn like a hat to do detail work like this. They help a lot with seeing and working with detail.

The undercutting is an issue at this point because when we made the original single quilt square molds as each participant finished we made sure the completed wax quilt square sculptures did not have undercuts. The reason for this was each mold is used to make a series of editions of cast paper sculptures and single edition of the waxes for the final bronze figure. In order to pull the cast paper out of the mold it is important that the art design in the mold not have undercuts or the cast paper will hang-up on edges and tear apart. Yet when wax quilt squares are made off the molds and worked into the quilts borders of the sculptures they look much better with undercutting. To allow each mold to have two functions it was decided to put the work and effort into undercuts only on the final casting waxes that would be working into the figures.

Will Andras called again on Friday afternoon to go over fundraising activities, getting some other school involvement in the Helping Hands Campaign and timeline and funding needs for keeping the working going on the second Monument figure.



Michael putting an acrylic patina on cast paper for Child Abuse Monument patron Gordon Kirke

Six square cast paper quilts are used for fundraising purposes.



O'Puck cleaning up a wax quilt border just prior to silicone mold lay ups.

Michael finishing off a plaster mother mold

Plaster mother molds are removed from the silicone rubber molds.

The silicone rubber mold is demoulded from the wax six panel quilt.

Imperfections in the silicone rubber molds are trimmed and buffed out.




Activities and Events Over the Week of March 19 to 25, 2006:

O'Puck, Richard and Dr. Irving cleaned up the quilt borders and made silicone rubber molds of the last quilt squares for the first Monument figure. This was a valuable volunteer contribution by Richard.

Sunday Dr. Irving poured a wax quilt square of one of the survivors from Maple Leaf Gardens and sculpted in the undercuts and cleaned up the quilt square.

On Monday, March 20, Dr. Irving did a presentation to the Ontario Wood Carvers Association OWCA about the need for volunteers for carving undercuts in the quilt squares. A number of OWCA members stated they would come by on Saturdays over the months of April, May and June. We look forward to their contributions.

Several times over the week Bruce from BLP Bronze and Dr. Irving went over details and issues for the casting process for the arms, shoulders and head.

Friday Dr. Irving poured five wax quilt squares for the volunteer team.

On Saturday, March 25, Barb, Don and Stephen stopped by and we did undercutting and clean up on five quilt squares. Their volunteer efforts are greatly appreciated.

In the evenings over the week and on Saturday morning Dr. Irving sculpted on two figures for my "Studies in a Form" series and Dr. Irving was able to prepare two of my sculptures from the "Embryo Show" series for casting in bronze.

On Saturday, Sunday and Monday of March 18, 19 and 20 Dr. Irving sculpted two commissions of a logo and an Ocean and Sailboat scene for BLP Bronze. Dr. Irving worked on the chasing, grinding and polishing of those pieces after the casting process for parts of Tuesday and Wednesday.

Quilt square from Maple Leaf Gardens abuse survivor.

It is our pleasure to invite Member of OWCA, Ontario Wood Carvers Association to participate in the final stages of the Monument.


What is the Estimated Completion Time of the Monument?

We are expecting to have the first Monument figure was completed in September of 2007.

The second figure can not be estimated for a completion date until final confirmation of the site and funds are raised for recasting this previous damaged figure.

What are the Unveiling Plans?
We are holding off on plans for publicly displaying or unveiling a completed Monument or single Monument figure until we are further along in the welding and assembly process. In the fall of 2012 we we likely be able to make more clear decisions on post completion activities for the first Child Abuse Monument figure.

Do return occasionally to this section to see updates of where we are at.

How can I Help?

You can help by collecting and sending HandPrints for placement inside the Child Abuse Monument figures. To read more about the "Helping Hands" Campaign go to the "Helping Hand" web page.

Through the summer
and fall of 2006 we
are still accepting
HandPrints for
placement inside the
Child Abuse Monument.





























































Be Happy

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Keep your Donations coming.
They are greatly needed to help with finishing the sculpting
of the second Child Abuse Monument figure in the foundry

* Donations *
* Story of the Monument/Phases of the Project * Phase 1: Design * Phase II: Create * Phase III: Implement * Phase IV:Positioning *
* Monument Overview * Monument Project Organization * Project Story - Flash Movie *
* A Healing Monument * Monument as Social Action * A Gift for Allies in Healing *
* Artistic Director: Michael C. Irving, Ph.D. * Assisting Sculptors * Studio Visits *
* Monument Conception/Creation * Monument Sculpting * Casting the Bronze *
* Quilt Square Workshop Participants *
Heroes of the Monument * Facing Challenges * Monument Lessons * Monument Stories
* Self Care Activities for Survivors * Well Being * Creating Coping Lists * Meditation Gallery *
* Information on Child Abuse
* Types of Abuse * Impacts of Abuse * Responses to Abuse *
* Resource Links on Child Abuse *
* Survivor Monument Poetry and Quilt Square Books *
* Awareness Campaign * Research Forum * Cambridge Tour * DAs School *
Contribute a HandPrint Message for Placement Inside the Child Abuse Monument *
* Sponsorship as Healing * Sponsors * Local Sponsors * Sponsorship Opportunities *
* Unveiling *

*All Rights Reserved
copyright (1991-2012)