Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Bernd Weinmayer: Evolving Artist

 Bernd Weinmayer, Geman by birth, was vacationing with his family in Austria after having completed secondary school. As with many who have just graduated from high school, he was contemplating his own future as possibly becoming a gardener. Call it a mother's intuition when she suggested he check out a glass training school about 12 miles away from their vacation home.


Weinmayer met the manager of the glass blowing workshop. This manager took a good deal of time with this curious young man explaining the art. It was then that Weinmayer found his passion. He realized that if he applied himself he could learn about the world of transparent glass in all its complexities. 





Ever interested in learning more, Weinmayer would follow his workshop training with 4 years of technical school and 2 years of craft and design. Here are some of his amazing designs.

 In 2003, he learned about plasma neon techniques which replaced his melting bottles and a couple of them are featured below. Weinmayer is a fine example of the evolution of an artist as new techniques and materials are learned.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Richard Sweeney's Transformation Paper to Metal



Last week, I shared with all you art fans the beautiful folded paper works of Richard Sweeney (1984-). At the end, there was an image of his pleated paper art translated into an astonishing outdoor sculpture. While it doesn't really fit the definition of "alchemy," it's the word that keeps popping up in my mind. 



Perhaps a better definition would be "transformation." Yet, that still isn't quite the word for the process by which paper became metal. Instead of searching for the word, here's the process in images of how Sweeney's work and with his direction, paper became a lovely, lyrical metal sculpture.

First there was the need for a model by Sweeney  of the final sculpture:





 From the model, a substructure was developed UAP - known as a leader in worldwide public art and architectural designs. They often collaborate with the artist to determine how best to generate the "bones" of a design. UAP created this structure in a very large warehouse and then transported in to its placement in ZhengZhou, China. 

Shipped in its pieces, it was re-assembled on site in China. After which, the final touches were added. 

It is sheathed in stainless steel polished to a mirror finish and measures 39 feet by 36 feet.

Here, you can see not only the sculptural, but the lovely environment surrounding it. It's meant to be a sun shelter and a communal meeting place. 

I wonder if when Sweeney made his pleated paper sculptures, he dreamed of a day when they would become something else...


Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Richard Sweeney: Lyrical Sculptor

 As regular art fans to my blog have probably figured out by now, I am fascinated by what artists can do with something as everyday in usage as paper. I've featured the best examples of quilling, origami, sculpting,and cutouts. 


What you may not know is how fascinated I've been since high school art class where I first saw Malevich's painting of "Suprematist Composition: White on White" (1918). It seemed to give permission to create using only tonal paints. 



You can imagine how drawn I am to the magic of the combination of tones and paper into all its artistic forms. An artist, who combines these elements with sculpturing, is Richard Sweeney (1984-)




Sweeney's art reflects his interest in nature's organic forms and growth patterns. His primary tools are: paper, ruler, cutter and glue - although sometimes he pleats the paper instead of using glue. 


Since his primary inspiration is in the outdoors, he explains his manner of "seeing" this way:

“I like to go out walking in the countryside, so there is plenty to see there that influences me—birds in flight, streams, and rivers, cloud formations—so I’ll make sketches and take photographs and let that guide my sculptural work. I don’t usually work with a particular form in mind,” he says, noting that each sculpture often takes multiple weeks to complete.

Sweeney regularly conducts workshops teaching his techniques and also has a book titled, "Paper Sculpture." 







One last thing: The pleated paper has been the basis for a permanent outdoor sculpture. Naturally, paper had to be replaced with something more weather resistant. Next week, the process will unfold in photos from paper to what you see below.

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

The Snows Have Landed

 Our town had snow for 3 days starting Christmas night. Of course, it's quiet and lovely when everything is covered in white. 


The issue for our town is that it snows infrequently and so we don't have the equipment to clear it off all our road. It's unlike other places that know full winters of snow. 


Here,driving becomes very hazardous. That's why I hope this is the end of our snow season. 


It did get me thinking about how much fun and how much response you wonderful art fans gave to the blog to various artists' depiction of rain. I think by now you know were I'm going... yes, it's about snow. 



The images are not necessarily the most famous from classes in Art History, but the names of the artists are probably familiar. They include: Van Gogh, Monet, Pissarro, Kandinsky, Munch, Freidrich, and Gauguin. 


Just for fun, the images are in no particular order. See how many you can guess correctly... and here's to many smiles and lots of laughter in this New Year.  

1. Pisssarro  2. Gauguin  3. Monet  4. Munch  5. Van Gogh   6. Kandinsky   7. Friedrich