Friday, January 31, 2014

Background and Artist Statement


Prior to 2008 I was a landscaping 
contractor focused on the design and creation of outdoor living spaces, including water features.  Koi ponds, though fun to create, require more ongoing work than many folks want to deal with. While self contained water fountains are lower maintenance, I had been less than satisfied with the typical selection available at garden centers. There just had to be a natural and tasteful alternative to the proverbial frog with water shooting from its mouth or the Grecian woman pouring water from a pitcher!

While visiting a bonsai studio in the Spring of 2007 I noticed something that stopped me in my tracks -- a small sample of slender, sweeping and richly colorful natural stone columns.  I couldn't get this wonder of nature out of my mind!  So I embarked on a long diligent search which eventually led to contact with the geologist who quarries this 45 million year old stone.  This particular stone, correctly identified as andesite, but commonly referred to as basalt, is sourced from only one location on the planet.  It bares rich hues of rust, gold, champagne and mossy green, not to mention eggplant and powder blue! The curious lines of these natural rock spires, combined with such vibrant color variations, make them breathtaking to behold and fun to work with. 

I feel blessed to have developed a niche that melds my artistic inclinations and landscape design experience with a need in the marketplace for art quality natural stone water fountains
  Robert, owner/artist of Igneous Rock Gallery

I chose this rock, not because it's the rarest columnar stone, though it is, nor the most beautiful on the planet, though I also think it is.  I chose to work with these columns because they draw me.  They excite me.  They help me feel more human or alive, or something.  It’s almost as if they chose me and make me devote myself to their fullest potential.

My artistic intention is to alter this natural material minimally while accentuating its appeal by focusing on the composition and presentation of the columns.  If you look at my work I hope you see what I see and feel the natural attraction of this wonderful ancient stone.