I Cast Iron: Katie Henson

I cast iron for the unique process and the amazing community that surrounds it.

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Hi, my name is Katie Henson. I am a senior at Massachusetts College of Art and Design and I am originally from Medford, Massachusetts.

I started casting iron after taking my first foundry class my sophomore year at MassArt. Previously, I had been bouncing around between different areas of the 3D Department, but after taking my first foundry class, I kind of felt like I found my people so to speak and eventually fell in with the MassArt Iron Corps about a year later.

My favorite thing about the iron casting process is that it can be very physically intensive at times and everything is always a team effort and the community that surrounds iron casting is so passionate about what they do and work so hard for their artwork but have a great time doing it at the same time and that makes it unlike any other artistic practice that I’ve been a part of.

I think the most surprising thing about my metal casting journey is this gallery because as someone who grew up in Medford I used to go to Saugus Iron Works for field trips, so to be able to work with Saugus Iron Works as an artist all these years later is absolutely amazing.

I cast iron because of the unique process and because of the amazing community that surrounds it.

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1 minute, 19 seconds

Observe Katie Henson, a Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt) Iron Corps student, explaining how she began casting iron and her favorite parts of the process.


A cast iron artwork with "Abandon All Hope" written above a wolf's head
Abandon All Hope

Katie Henson

Both the wolf’s head and the text, “Abandon All Hope," are referencing the “Divine Comedy” by Dante Alighieri.

Iron is thought to contain the spirits of the dead, which is why this is the chosen medium, as this is inscribed over the gates of Hell. The wolf is the most terrifying beast he encounters in the dark woods before entering Hell.
A ram's skull sculpture with cast iron horns
Ram Skull

Katie Henson

This is a sculpture of a ram’s skull with cast iron horns, a bronze skull, and leather accents where the two metals meet. The skull was cast in bronze to contrast the iron horns.

I am interested in skulls as forms and create them using various materials.

Last updated: February 8, 2021