The National Casting Center within the School of Art and Design at Alfred University comprises two comprehensive state of the art facilities one specializing in Glass Casting and the other in Metal Casting. Courses are taught extensively in both areas from sophomore through to Graduate Level. As a part of the Sculpture Dimensional Studies Division and curriculum, students can overlap disciplines and techniques developing skills from small scale to large-scale sculpture. Rich in history, both glass and foundry arts date back over 5000 years. Students learn ancient techniques alongside environmental practices and current digital processes and are strongly encouraged to push the practice into new territories.
The brand new Glass Casting Facility includes heat recovery glory holes with a full range of kilns, a new CNC mold ramming press, and appropriate finishing tools. Molding processes taught are lost wax, zircon, ceramic shell, green sand, clay, and resin bonded sand. The 7000 square foot foundry houses a large wax working room, patina area, walk in sand blasting and an extensive casting floor with a fully electronic overhead bridge crane. Furnaces range from a high temp induction furnace for stainless and Corten steel, a 1000 pound coke fired iron cupola, charcoal fired ancient furnace as well as two gas fired bronze and aluminum crucible furnaces and centrifugal casting. Future plans include adding a vegetable oil furnace to the Environmental Foundry.
Students studying at the National Casting Center are not only able to manifest their visions in materials and unparalleled technologies, they are encouraged to experiment with technique and are expected to gain experience in running the facilities which provides them with valuable working skills upon graduation. Many students graduating through the National Casting Center are now in leadership positions as teachers, employed in some of the top fine art foundries and glass centers nationwide or have successfully set up their own studios.
Coral Penelope Lambert, Professor
Angus Powers, Associate Professor, Division Head of Sculpture Dimensional Studies
Karen Donnellan, Assistant Professor