Glyndebourne – Fiat 500

Made at Glyndebourne Opera for the 2021 Festival production Il Turco in Italia, directed by Mariame Clément and designed by Julia Hansen.

This side of a classic red Fiat 500 was made at a maximum thickness of 50mm to allow for tracking onto stage through a specific slot in the set walls.

I scaled up to 1:1 from 1:25 drawing and projected the shape and details onto 12mm ply to form backing. Cut out the door panel and prepped hinge blocks and handle mechanism. I then blocked up with sheet polystyrene around these hardware elements and carved in the detail.

The polycarve was then coated in traditional brown paper and size, sealed with button polish and coated in polycoat, sanding to smooth between each layer.

I mixed paint to colour match other elements in the show and applied thin coats with a spray gun, and coated with multiple layers of bona mega glaze for a high shine finish. Window edging was added and the door fitted before it was mounted onto its tracking spades.

Official Show photography  © Glyndebourne Productions Ltd. Photo: Bill Cooper