Stainless Steel and Wood

What is Art? My answer: Art is something that has been created from the heart.  Art is not created to benefit the bottom line.  Art is created because it cannot be stopped.  It cannot be held in.  Time does not matter.  Production time is not measured.  A piece of art is not done until the heart is satisfied that it has been properly completed. That’s my definition.  Other artists will most likely have their own and different definition.

  • Creating Automata is my last creative effort.  I am committed to “being committed to automata” until the very end.
  • All of my creations are born in my head…and then are built freehand with my hands.  I design everything and I create everything myself.
  • I want my automata to all tell a story…to be interesting.
  • I will usually create open ended editions.  The #1 will always belong to my wife, and will not be sold (until perhaps after my death).  The #1 will serve as a loose blueprint for subsequent builds.  
  • As I write this I don’t expect to be creating higher than #5 or so of any particular title.  I’m not a factory.  I am an artist and I love the creation of the first one (#1).  And I enjoy the creation of subsequent  pieces…improving each over the last.  But a production line I am not.
  • I will keep a photographic record of each build, and a Project Sheet, which will be available to the public.
  • Future creations in a series (#2+) will be based on the #1 of the series. No creation will be identical in detail.  All of a series will use the same concept as the #1, and general dimensions will most likely be similar.
  • Each creation will be better than the last.  The more an artist works in a medium the better the work becomes.
  • From this point on (April 2019) all of my creations will be motorized.  They will also be hand crankable.  I’ve had too many people ask me “Why is there no motor?”.  As I work with my creations I sometimes think about working in the 1800’s…materials that were available then were used.  If motors had been available then more of the old automata would have been motorized.  Many of them were powered…by wind up mechanisms. 
  • I am committed to “build to last”.  As I build I strive to make something that will last for generations.  Part of my creation process involves a long run (under power) of many cycles…in the thousands.  This long run takes place before I disassemble for paint.  Then after paint and reassembly another long run under power. Many of the fasteners that I use are stainless steel.  I use ball bearings frequently…and stainless steel shafting.  I like my creations to operate smoothly and freely.  I like them to be a pleasure to hand crank.
  • Early in my working career I was a field engineer for IBM.  I consider this to have been my “best” job.  This was back in the days of electro-mechanical processing equipment.  Keypunches, verifiers, printers, sorters, typewriters, dictating machines and more were all part of my job.  I love working with my hands and with electro mechanical things.
  • As I write this Artist Statement I am aware that it is all about me.  Unstated is the hope that there will be a segment of the humans on this spaceship of ours that will appreciate my creations and who’s lives will be enriched by the automata that I conceive and create.