This is me…..
Ayuh, I was born in Rockland, Maine in 1961. Quite possibly, my first of many blessings. After graduating Maine Maritime Academy in 1983 with a BS Marine Engineering, I worked in marine related employment for the next 9 years. Coming ashore to raise a family and run my own business was a dream come true for me. As a kid I had visions of being self employed and many other visions that seemed so much like fantasy that they did not get spoken. I did not know how to express my goals or how to achieve this individual approach to livelihood. I missed many signs……like the story of Richard Serra in Time magazine that I read over and over. Or the pastel of a clown I did in Jr High art class that was sold to a visitor at the school that spotted the piece hanging in the corridor, and it wasn't even an art sale. In later years I recall reading of local artists Harry Stump and Charlie Oakes and being almost surprised at how much enjoyment I got out of it and the intrigue it provoked. I believe at the time I felt all sophisticated because I was reading up on art and "got it" a bit, I don't recall feeling like "I could do that". That came on very slowly….but, with confidence.
Turns out I have been gifted with raw talent. This gift was taken for granted most of my life and I thought others needed just a little kick in the butt or maybe a bit more "give a shit". After crossing paths with three individuals in my early forties who possessed degrees in sculpture, this "gift" was made quite obvious. The three eagerly pointed out my talents and enthusiastically provided much encouragement and mentoring, which, within a couple of years time led to me making a bold claim of pushing myself to a career in art.
Efforts in my "shop" with the actual intent of creating something "artistic" began in early 2005. My first public exhibition of artwork was a solo show at the Cushing Historical Society's Arts In the Barn series in 2007. 34 sculptures with a combined weight of somewhere near 6 ton were transported to Cushing for the weekend show. When it was over a total of 16 pieces had been sold. WOW! I spent Monday and Tuesday transporting sculpture back home and making deliveries and even installations!. Wrapped that all up Tuesday evening with an OUI………..it was obvious that I needed a lesson in handling success. Creation was becoming more and more prevalent in my life, but, so were the struggles with the drink. This new found experience of creating was providing much reward and a sense of spirituality was more and more present. The tug-of -war continued to the point that a train wreck was inevitable. Just over four years ago I was blessed, once again, and the plug was put in the jug!
This year, 2016, marks one full decade of exhibiting sculpture. In that same time a complete transition has occurred into a career as a full time artist. My work has been well received and I have been rewarded with several fairly high profile commissions, public art installations around Maine and beyond, and several series of works that can be expanded upon. It will be a thrill to bookend my first ten years in the art world with a solo show at the University of Maine at Farmington. I have been given the privilege of curating my own show to introduce the world to my latest series of work known as Sculpture Soup this fall.
The amount of gratitude I have for all that have tolerated my antics over the years, the ones that knew of my gift before I and didn't give up on believing in me; and, all that have provided support and encouragement along the way…….Wow. It is a true passion, this does not seem like work most of the time. Turns out there has been a fire burning inside for some time now. It took me a long time to realize there was one in there and it took me a while longer to learn how to control it. I think I am getting there!
There have been many blessings along the way and I am aware of at least some of them daily. This entire art thing, spirituality thing and not getting drunk thing……I'm not really sure which came first, the egg or the chicken, but, I know my life has been changed.
This is my work…..
My work is heavily comprised of salvaged metals of several sorts. Over the years I ran my welding/consulting company many projects were repairs, upgrades, and modifications of all types of machinery and equipment, structural welding, marine repairs, bridge work, farm equipment, over the road machinery, signage, etc. Often this left me with the duty of removing the discarded materials. I began developing an eye and an appreciation for more and more of this detritus and resolving ways of putting the material to use. Over time the end result was in more of an artistic manner.
more to follow………..