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Chris O'Rourke

Exploring the forms of life and art are a source of endless fascination to me. I feel form is most interesting in contrast, in relationships of juxtaposition and harmony. I am interested in the contrast of shape and line, texture and finish, in a combination that is aesthetically intriguing. Sculpting in metal is my way to convey an aesthetic that is otherwise difficult to express. My pieces are a combination of my spirituality, emotion, desire, subconscious thought, sensation and philosophy. Inherent to their creation is the belief that the human spirit is continually striving for something better, in a perpetual search for higher understanding. As a result, my works are a final expression of dreams made real, of the thoughts, wishes and emotions that comprise my personal consciousness.

My Approach

My approach to the construction of a piece, and choice of material, is purposeful and significant. The choice to construct and create using metal as my medium reflects a desire to create using something derived from the earth, from essential material. I am intrigued by the idea that the completed sculpture would suggest that it's origins were in nature, that this is how it was found...the organic feel that occurs when the craftsmanship does not reveal its origins as man-made, showing no weld, and revealing the true potentiality and beauty of metal.

I am interested in the possibility of perfection, in striving for a flawless execution, all the while aware that true perfection is paradoxically unattainable. I am guided by line, texture, form and finish.
My fabrication techniques - creating shapes, cutting, bending, finishing and welding, the final patinas and colorations- are processes that I develop and refine constantly, and consciously. I feel the persistent development of technique, and the opportunity it creates for further invention, is a key element to the creative process. I strongly believe an artist should be a master of his craft, therefore every detail of the conception, design, and construction of the work is thoroughly explored through deliberate effort.

From original concept to completed sculpture, each piece changes substantially in accordance with my own evolving point of view, and I find this developmental process to be central to the final piece itself. Equally important is the process of discovering what the metal will and will not do, and exploring the parameters of its limitations and possibilities. I am always curious to discover, in something like a game, how far I can dictate the form of the sculpture, before the metal begins to answer me as to just how much it is willing to comply with my wishes.

My Wishes For The Viewer

My wish for the viewer is directly related to the creative process just described. Just as my wishes for the metal are tempered by its own inherent nature, I also wish not to dictate the experience of the viewer. While my pieces are non-representational, without definition, everyone will see something different in my art, and I want that subjective interpretation to be left to the viewer.