While resin-made outdoor decor may be lighter and cheaper to ship, nothing says “class” like real bronze garden statuary. Heavy, substantial, and loaded with decorative elan, a few well-made bronze pieces can turn a so-so backyard area into a wonderful outdoor retreat.
How Its Made and Why Its Costly
Created from an alloy combining copper mixed with hardening agents, bronze garden statuary is noted for its strength, appearance, and versatility. The hardening agents used; most often tin, but also zinc, magnesium, and other materials, help to safeguard against the elements, enabling bronze pieces to last indefinitely.
Untreated with lacquer or other sealing agents, bronze oxidizes over time, turning an attractive shade of green called verdigris. Others prefer the natural patina bronze eventually develops and opt to slow down oxidization with the use of paste wax.
Artisans create bronze garden statuary from a method called lost wax, which involves a complex procedure involving a great deal of time and effort. For this reason, it is not difficult to understand why statuary of this type costs more. Depending on the size and the amount of detail involved in creating the piece, prices can range anywhere from a few dollars all the way up to thousands of dollars.
A World of Choices
Bronze garden statuary can be found at any number of Web sites online. Garden and outdoor decor sites often offer statuary in an array of different forms. In additional to classical reproductions of figures from ancient Roman and Greek eras, one can find wonderfully whimsical statuary that includes angels, fairies, goddesses, gargoyles, dragons, children, and a host of animal-themed pieces. The Eastern influence in statuary can be seen in the increasing popularity of pieces paying homage to the many faces of Buddha, pagodas, foo dogs, and other Asian decor favorites.
Many artisans include the incorporation of tubing and pumps to turn bronze garden statuary in fountains and waterfalls for outdoor water features. Some of the fountains include herons and other waterfowl, goldfish, koi, dolphins, and mermaids. Waterfalls featuring bronze pots, spheres, cubes, bamboo, and even solid slabs of bronze with water cascading over them are all trendy items that have been cast into bronze and utilized as interesting and beautiful garden items.
Keep It Simple
Just about anything that can be fashioned into a shape or form can be turned into bronze garden statuary. It is best to select a focus such as Asian, whimsical, or classical, when selecting statuary for landscape art. By maintaining a sense of continuity throughout the area, a better sense of well-thought-out design permeates your yard instead of a mishmash of different styles and themes.
Bronze garden statuary is a lovely way to highlight an outdoor area, but remember to keep it at that: as an accent. Too much can be overkill and create a manmade sense of artificiality that you want to avoid. Use it sparingly to accent your favorite plants or areas of the garden and you’ll be on the right track. A few wonderful, carefully selected pieces can turn your outdoor retreat into a favorite hideaway to enjoy for years to come.
Photo by Ricardo Martins, Creative Commons Attribution License