Bio

Dave Wertz 

I seek to share the excitement and mystery of this life with the viewer through three-dimensional fine art.  All of my work is hand fabricated using various combinations of forging and welding, techniques as ancient as they are modern and cutting edge. I employ a vast array of tools and equipment to achieve a diversity of expressions ranging from contemporary sleekness to the worn patinas of antiquity. The paints and finishes I use operate in much the same way, drawing inspiration from the full length and breadth of the spectrum.  In the majority of my work I employ carbon steel, but on occasion I do add certain exotic metals. Lately, I have been swept up in the raw beauty of reclaimed metal.  No matter which metal I use, I love the curve and seek it out in all of its glory and wonder. As my career evolves and shifts, I notice my appreciation for the fundamental curve of the female form, and replicate it in the abstract as well as the stylized and functional.

The Series

Upon reflection, certain trends and styles are apparent in my evolution as an artist. One of my strongest intuitive inclinations has been to work in “Series.” When I create a work using a new style, idea, or concept, I review and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of not only the finished piece but also the processes and skills that were needed to bring it to fruition. If find myself intrigued, I consider the known limits and possible expansions of them in regard to my present understanding and skill. If the potential appears to be strong enough that the emerging work will support itself aesthetically, and challenge me mentally and skill-wise, I embark upon another series. This is a process of allowance, of understanding just how far concepts can move, and of exploring the interrelationship between the physical manipulation of metal and the emergence of inspiration.

Musical

This series probes the relationship between the musician and the instrument — the place where the musician ceases to exist and becomes the music, the place where the music touches our souls.

Guitar Man – Fat Boy – Fat Boy Plays the Blues – Way Phat – & 8 more.

 

Abstract Wall Pieces

This series features painting with metal — the exploration of shape and texture against the construct of design. The series plays within the areas normally reserved for painters, and seeks to capture the feeling of color by using the third dimension.

Stranger in a Foreign Land – Low Latitude Heart Break – Streak of Infidelity – Sheet Metal Grin – & 22 more.

 

Architectural Work & Furniture

In this series, I stretch into the engineering field, moving the concept of art into the utilitarian arena of form and function. My brain both loves it and hates it. It is worth the headaches and sleepless nights to achieve this difficult mix and create a pleasing and workable idea that can be implemented and enjoyed.

Tango Table – Floating Table – Rosenoff Staircase – Harmond Staircase – & 37 more

 

Shoes

Not just any shoes — stilettos! The beauty and grace of stilettos are my small tribute to women. To see how much women love these shoes, and to watch their faces light up as they touch them, is worth all of the time and effort involved.

Ruby Red Slippers – Emerald Green Slippers – Rock’in Reds – Passion Purple – 8 more

 

Women

This series is my attempt to experience women as other women do and then to convey that experience through a medium that can be hard and cold yet can also move and bend. I am sure I have not even come close to the actual experience of women, but the attempt has changed my life. Seeing how women interact with this art touches my heart.

Coalition of Memories – Retreat to Incomprehensible self – Lola – Lightin’ – & 31 more

 

Crucifixions

This series is a parallel to my Women series, rendering female figures in some configuration of crucifixion. As with the Women series, I attempt to understand and communicate life from a woman’s perspective, but I reach further to offer to each and every woman the understanding that this world is not fair and that women carry more than their fair share of burden and pain as they walk through it.

Crucifixion 1 – 26

 

Free Standing Abstracts

This series offers the feeling of running free with no limits — rough, jagged, smooth, polished, and all things in between. This is the place where my soul smiles and my heart jumps and I can convey the excitement and wonder of life. In the process, I can relate to the viewer some of the mysteries of this world that cannot be framed by words.

Disinifity – Suffocation of Light – 12 Degrees Left and 47 Minutes – Flat Footing to Electric Music – & 35 more.

 

Lizards

Well, lizards are just fun. They also reflect the challenges of this craft. Lizards teach me so much about my material and technique — it is not easy to capture personality in a piece of steel. To achieve personality in lizard form is a treat for me and I enjoy seeing the amusement the lizards draw from the viewer.

Stormy – Joe Romeo – Sugar – Sneaky – & 15 more

 

Volume and Vessels

This series speaks to the wonder of curves. In my search for the perfect curve, I often seek out vessels. Crafting compound curves from steel challenges me technically and aesthetically. To bring a combination of curves together in a pleasing and comfortable shape is a great joy.

Port-Au-Prince 1982 – True Lies – Neurotic Embrace – Neck Bones & Rice – & 12 more

 

Horses

This is my first series incorporating repurposed steel. Using only posture to achieve personality is my challenge here. I am very excited to bring the colors and patinas of old and weathered steel to life in the figures of horses.

Tailgate – Sugar Magnolia – If Not for Me – Shotgun –Hurricane – Skittish – Chrome Wind – 12 more.

 

Gallery Representation

TEW Galleries

Atlanta, Georgia

 

Signature 9

Roanoke, Virginia

 

Trove Gallery

Park City, Utah

 

 Organizations

Artisans Center of Virginia

Juried Certification:  Professional Artisan Distinction

 

Tri-State Sculptors

 

Art Council of the Blue Ridge

 

League of Roanoke Artist

 

Southwest Virginia Metal Workers Guild

 

Washington Sculptor Group

 

Virginia Equine Artist Association

 

International Sculpture Center

 

The American Crafts Council

 

Public Commissions

Franklin County YMCA

Rocky Mount, Virginia

 

Hidden Valley Country Club

Roanoke, Virginia

 

Arlington County Department of Environmental Services

Office of Sustainability and Environmental Management

Arlington, Virginia

(This commission consisted of 80 individual unique sculptures)

Roanoke Rescue Mission

Roanoke, Virginia

 

Shows and Exhibits (Post Asia)
July 2010 Bath County Art Show

2nd Place Sculpture Division

Hot Springs, VA

 

September 2010 25th Sculpture Celebration

Judges Award

Lenoir, NC

 

November 2010

Art View Visions & Voices

Contemporary International Art Exhibition

Roanoke, VA

 

December 2010

Patton Philips Gallery

Solo Show

Roanoke, VA

 

December 2010

Red Wolf Gallery

Collaborative Show with Christine Kosiba

Brevard NC

 

March 2011

Dialogue Gallery

Marginal Art

Roanoke, VA

 

April 2011

Open Studio Tour

Solo Show

Roanoke, VA

 

May 2011

Love Your Mother Show

Sinkland Farms Artisan Center

New River Land Trust

Riner, VA

 

June 2011

Taubman Museum Art Show

Sculpture Division Award

Roanoke, VA

 

June 2011

Annapolis Art Show

Annapolis, MD

 

July 2011

Bath County Art Show

Sculpture Division Award

Hot Springs, VA

 

July 2011

Rockbridge Bath Art Show

1st Place Sculpture

Lexington, VA

 

August 2011

The La De Da Show

Solo Show

Roanoke, VA

 

August 2011

Loveland Invitational Sculpture Show

Loveland, CO

 

September 2011

Lenoir Sculpture Celebration

Lenoir, NC

 

September 2011

Art On The Lawn

Pearisburg, VA

 

November 2011

Ferrum College

Ferrum, VA

 

November 2011

Piedmont Craftsmen Show

Winston-Salem, NC

 

December 2011

Intersection Gallery

Winston-Salem, NC

 

February 2012

Gallery C

Raleigh, NC

 

March 2012

American Craft Council Show

Atlanta, GA

 

May 2012

Lynne Goldman Studio

Charlottesville, VA

 

September 2012

Tew Gallery

Atlanta, GA

 

December 2012

The Electric Company

Bedford, VA

 

January 2013

Art Works For Virginia

Richmond, VA

 

March 2013

Sculpture Now 2013

Washington, DC

 

April 2013

Open Studio Tour

Roanoke, VA

 

July 2013

Bath County Art Show

Sculpture Division Award

Warm Springs, VA

 

October 2013

Port Warwick Art & Sculpture Festival

Walt Whitman Sculpture Award

Port Warwick, VA

 

October 2013

New River Biennial 2013

Perspective Gallery

First Award of Distinction

Blacksburg, VA

 

February 2014

American Craft Council

Baltimore, MD

 

June 2014

Caldwell Arts Council

3 Person Show

Lenoir, NC

 

October 2014

Troika Gallery

Shown with Christine Kosiba

Floyd, VA

 

October 2014

TEW Galleries

Solo Show

Atlanta, GA

 

 

February 2015

Invision Commission

Christiansburg, VA

 

July 2015

Parker Commission

Roanoke, VA

 

August 2015

Gallery C

Raleigh, NC

 

September 2015

LRA Show Case

Roanoke, VA

 

October 2015

Dalton Commission

Altivista, VA

 

March 2016

Ferrum College Solo Show

Ferrum, VA

 

April 2016

Philadelphia Furniture Show

Philaselphia, PA