Having been raised in central Wisconsin among the woods and bluffs, I was afforded ample opportunity to explore, observe and interact with wildlife nurturing what has become a lifelong fascination with, and connection to animals. Some of my favorite childhood memories involved animals of one kind or another. The fawn I bottle-fed at a wildlife rescue, the rabbits I raised and even the cougar cub I was allowed to hold purring against my chest were spiritual encounters that touched and inspired me. Even the books I read as a young boy were those told by and about animals.
My love for nature and its creatures was paralleled by an innate and almost visceral need to draw and paint. I was fortunate to have parents and an older brother who nurtured my talent and interest from the time I could first hold a pencil and brush. It wasn’t until I was completing my MFA in painting that I began a serious pursuit of sculpting, which opened a whole new world for me. I found that I could bring a depth and breadth to my subjects through sculpture that I missed when creating two-dimensional art. Whether it’s capturing the motion of a running wolf or the almost human-like expression of a lazy rabbit waking from a nap, my work has evolved to a whole new level through sculpture. Plus I can encourage people to touch, hold and have a tactile experience with sculpture that I couldn’t with my paintings.
In addition to creating art, I have a passion for teaching art. I find it endlessly exciting to foster the talents of college art students and feel it is one way I can help ensure that arts will continue for generations to come. Being an adjunct professor allows me to have the best of both worlds. By helping aspiring artists to master their craft, I have become stronger in my own.
Awards and commissions:
K9 War Memorial, Fort Atkinson, WI
U.S. Capitol, Washington, DC
Historic Monroe Building, Chicago, Illinois