This nativity is made using the ancient lost wax method of casting bronze. Originating in the Middle East in the ninth century, lost wax is one of the first known methods of working with molten metal. The artisan sculpts wax, then coats it with clay and allows it to dry. Molten bronze is poured into the mold, melting the wax and allowing liquid bronze to fill the shape. After the metal cools, the artisan breaks the clay, revealing a one-of-a-kind figure.