Artist Statement

My art work is very much a part of me.  They are my offspring, I love them. I usually have to be talked into letting them be purchased.

My sculptures are hand crafted and one of a kind.  I do all the work on my sculptures alone, unlike Rodin (one of my favorites) who required a small army to complete his work.  However, Henry Moore is my favorite.  I corresponded with him from my studio in Mexico. Henry’s works and work ethic challenged me persistently.

I now consider that the ability to create my works of art is a gift from God.  However, I didn’t always believe this.  For years in my early studio in San Miguel I believed that man could only destroy.  I believed that anyone could do what I did.  All they had to do was to take the time and carve a sculpture from a block of wood or marble.  Or to make an armature and apply clay for the beginning of a bronze sculpture.

I do not draw or sketch before starting a sculpture.  I simply grab a tool and begin the work.  During the work process of seeing a piece of art come into existence, I receive my fulfillment. The news clippings, the interviews, the gala openings, and all that stuff, I do not get satisfaction from, nor enjoy.  For several years I became very selfish and did not expose my finished works to anyone.

Because of my various procedures, materials, and tools I’m usually working on ten to thirteen pieces at a time.  I can just flow from piece to piece and pick up hours, days or months later exactly where I left off.  This is a rare blessing indeed.

Almost all of my work tells a story. For example, my polished bronze series depicts the life of my first wife and family.  The series of cacti was from the years of my studio in Mexico, that only surfaced fifteen years later.  Additionally, my wood block prints of sandstone carvings of India were created twenty years after my association with them.

If I did not require money or food then I would most likely never leave my studio. Well, I would go to church on Sunday.

My present dream is developing an art park on my sixteen acres of wood in Western New York.

God Bless you,

Richard Bannister