Sometimes you don't know where you are going until you get there.
The path and evolution of Walter's work has never been planned. The journey is very different when the gift is given. When the skill is sought there is a process that gets you there. When the skill is given, you have to find out what to do with it.
Walter struggled a bit at first. The analytical builder refused to believe he was an "artist". A perfectionist has trouble with things that don't have a good reason to be there. Abstract was never a consideration. Nature did such a good job of design that it allowed the artist to concentrate on detail and technique as the hammer "paints" the still life captured by fire and endless strokes of a skilled hand. Forging is labor intensive.
Botanical subjects have become a favorite and Alabama has plenty to offer. We are rich with unique native species and abundant wildlife. They have given Walter's skills a chance to shine and grow. We are humbled, honored and just tickled pink to let everybody know that Walter has been asked to exhibit a collection of his sculpture at the Carnegie Visual Arts Center in Decatur, Alabama at the end of the year. We are very excited to be showcased at such a fine facility along with the other talented artist and amazing works on exhibit.
Some of the works shown on the website will be on display along with some new unseen pieces, including a hammered iron bowl. We would certainly like to encourage anyone close enough to visit the arts center in Decatur. Along with wonderful collections there are programs for children and adults to encourage creative skills and appreciation.
I have been a rider in the side car on this journey and my job is to toot the horn. So you will hear from me again soon with exact dates and details of the exhibit and opportunities to come and meet Walter. You all have an open invitation to come to the Forge if you are in Northeast Alabama. We welcome visitors to watch and ask questions about the process and historic equipment at the Forge. Just shoot us a note or give us a call to make sure the fire is burning.
Keep on Sparking!
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- Tags: blacksmithing, botanical art, Carnegie Visual Arts Center, Decatur Alabama, fine art exhibit, forge stories, hammered iron sculpture, nature still life, walter forge, walter howell