wax figures,sculptures usually made of beeswax or tallow, which is susceptible to modeling, casting, and coloring. The Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans used wax to make sacred images or death masks. Wax has been employed in the cire perduecire perdue
[Fr.,=lost wax], sculptural process of metal casting that may be used for hollow and solid casting. The sculptor makes a model in plaster or clay that is then coated with wax. This model is then covered with a perforated plaster or clay mold.
..... Click the link for more information. casting process for sculpture; it is also used in the preparatory stages by sculptors as a sketch or model for the finished work. Polychrome wax portraits were popular in Europe throughout the 18th cent. In the 19th cent., wax dolls came into fashion, and exhibits of wax figures, often portraits of notorious people, were popular. Among such collections Mme Tussaud's, London, and the Musée Grévin, Paris, are famous.
See F. Eliscu, Direct Wax Sculpture (1969); R. McDermott Miller, Figure Sculpture in Wax and Plaster (1971, repr. 1987).