further stimulated through exposure to the work of British Arts & Crafts style architects. He was particularly struck by the work of the architect Robert Lorimer and the landscape designer Gertrude Jekyll, and, in visiting properties they had collaborated on, noticed many beautiful examples of hand crafted metalwork – often hammered copper. A Jekyll trademark was a copper cauldron strategically placed in garden.
At college, Topp was also required to study bronze casting and finishing. He was taught by a famous Italian master bronze founder. “It wasn’t until many years later when I established Bronzino that some of these earlier influences were recalled” explains Topp.
Established in 2005, Bronzino’s creations are inspired by historic examples of metalwork from across Europe and beyond, ranging from the metal pots Topp polished as a child to the three meter wide cauldrons in Istanbul’s Topkapi Palace Kitchens. The mission is to keep alive the hand craft tradition of metalworking, reinventing the past and introducing new designs to meet contemporary functional requirements.
Each Bronzino planter is hand formed, welded and or riveted using traditional techniques. Designs are available to order: in any quantity and in any of four patinas or a natural polished finish. “All my vessels are made using traditional hand craft skills; each Bronzino style requires a different application of these. The sensual curved vessels are formed by hammering the copper while hot. We then tin plate by rubbing the hot metal with a thin stick of tin. The tin flows out over the surface like mercury. I love watching this transformation; it’s almost alchemy – resulting in a finish like old silver” Topp concludes.