Ronald J. Cavalier, a Fairfield County foundryman who specialized in the use of the ceramic shell technique for casting and restoring sculptures, died from natural causes at the age of 86 on April 28.
The Brooklyn-born Cavalier’s career spanned 60 years, beginning at Scope Precision Castings in Norwalk in 1955. He started The Renaissance Art Foundry in Norwalk and later created the Cavalier Renaissance Art Foundry in Bridgeport, where he used the ceramic shell lost wax process to cast and restore bronze, steel, silver, aluminum, concrete, pewter and brass pieces. His services were called upon by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Smithsonian Institution and the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and his projects included classic sculptures by Remington, Rodin, Giacometti and Moore.
Cavalier’s original career goal was acting – he studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City and appeared in numerous New England theatrical productions. He continued to act throughout his adult life, most recently in the 2018 television production “The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing” broadcast on Eternal World Television Network. He also sang as a tenor with the New Haven Chorale and produced two documentaries about art collector Joseph Hirshhorn.
Outside of the arts, Cavalier also owned a Vermont dairy farm and planted and managed a vineyard on his lakeside home in Benson, Vermont, where he made wine. He relocated to Marietta, Georgia, in 2018.