I have been in the middle of a huge transformation! I recently relocated my shop to Denver, Colorado. I JUST joined the brand new Rocky Mountain Chapter of NOMMA (The National Organization & Miscellaneous Metals Association). https://www.nomma.org/ and I am starting a YouTube Channel! SO MUCH NEWNESS!!!
I ventured onto new horizons to take a deep dive into a much bigger, more diverse art scene. I knew I needed to be around other artists at different stages, and my craving to be in proximity to lots of art galleries, makers and happenings landed me in Denver, a creative incubator.
Last week I finished forging steel cupboard handles for my parents' kitchen. My mom was in love with a leaf design by another blacksmith and asked me to do this years ago. For some reason, maybe other creatives can relate, if I don't have a deadline, the idea lives in limbo FOREVER. Timing aligned, though, and my part is completed. I cannot wait to see them installed!
I am creating sculptures and wall pieces to put up at coffee shops and restaurants. I am also preparing for an upcoming art show in one of Wyoming's best galleries, the Nicolaysen Art Museum in Casper, my hometown. My show will open up May 29, 2020. It's the Year of the Woman at the Nic, and I am thrilled to be apart of it.
Stay tuned for new videos, progress pictures, and updates! Thank you for checking out my art. I believe that in a world that can be too much and not enough and everything in between, it is art that consistently transmutes pain into beauty.
This past weekend was filled with sparks and flames and the rumbling hum of the air compressor. When I begin these classes, I have everyone decide on a flower and sketch out a design. This drawing is used as a reference and a template, and it helps the participant to make decisions about their pieces in the physical form. Most people tell me that they can't draw, but it doesn't have to look award winning. It's meant to get the juices flowing and start the process. When we are told we are bad at something, as a child, it can stifle our creativity from that point on. It's mostly our beliefs about what we can and can't do that determine the outcome. If the drawing looks like a kid's drawing, great. Let's start somewhere. It's ok to be a beginner. Beginning leads to finishing, and completing things leads to starting new creative adventures. It's fun to look back on the end product of something that required your full involvement to manifest. If you take my class, I'll walk you through all of the steps, and you go home knowing a little more about metalsmithing and your true capabilities.
With sparks and grinding dust,
Join me in my studio to learn to create your own, one of a kind, steel flower for your garden, home or loved one. After designing and cutting out a template for your flower, participants will learn to use a plasma cutter, grinder/die grinder, forge and welder. I will lead you, step by step, through cutting out your pieces, smoothing the edges, and elegantly shaping your flower petals, leaves and stem then welding them together. You will be able to stamp your initials into your masterpiece so that it can live on as a snippet of your legacy. The class is scheduled for Saturday & Sunday, May 19 & 20, and July 21 & 22. The cost is $115 for ART 321 members; $130 for non-members – plus a supply fee of $20 for each student. Your participation helps to grow and strengthen the art community in Casper, so thank you for your support and interest in the arts! To register call Art 321 at 307-265-2655 or drop into the downtown location at 321 W. Midwest Ave next to Racca's Pizzeria.
Art 321 hours: Tuesday - Saturday 10 - 4pm.
Betsy Bower (206) 406-2041 email: email@example.com
Art 321 Casper Artist Guild (307) 265-2655
On February 1, 2018 my first official gallery exhibition was a smashing hit. The crowd was serenaded by smooth jazz, the wine flowed, and 170 people appeared to enjoy the evening. The day before was the Super Blue Blood Moon with a full lunar eclipse. I tried my best to find it at 5:45 am, but the sky was overcast. So instead, I drove up Casper Mountain and paid a visit to Crimson Dawn, where legend has it that witches lived there a hundred years ago and performed their rituals. At that altitude, the fog looked like hazy lakes, and the trees and grass were covered in frost. The view atop the hill was as if it was out of a fairy tale.
My theme included nature and myth. Everything was made of raw materials, mostly rusted, up-cycled steel. I was given the remains of an old water tank from Lander, and it has been showing up in my works consistently. There are still a few bits left that will make their way into some form of art eventually.
The peonies I made out of an old coffee can. The elk was crafted from pipe and sheet metal. The moons were hammered out of angle iron, and the birds were bearings and scrap slivers of steel swept up off of the floor and covered in layers of weld. The caduceus is an symbol that revisits me when I am creating art for art's sake. I love the reminder that everything has an equal opposite, but that at their core, they are the same. It's a symbol I was captivated by in Alan Moore's Promethea. Tim Burton was an inspiration for the style of the flowers. The mandala mimics the tattoo on my forearm I designed 11 years ago. And the wings I made out of steel because my other wings are invisible.
The Lotus Fire Pit