If you have been around Bluff View Art District for any amount of time, you have seen the work of sculptor, Russell Whiting. Russell first became part of the River Gallery family in the mid-1990's and has continued to bring such a brilliantly creative element to the gallery and its surroundings.
Russell hails from Louisiana where he first started carving wood as a child. Eventually, he began to work with steel as a welder on oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, which led him to become a self-taught artist that has blazed the trail for carving steel with an acetylene torch. In his artist statement, Russell states, "strongly influenced by classical forms, I have begun to recognize the validity of my own subconscious dialogue as an important source for my work. This fusion results in classicism with contemporary execution. The creation of my images is influenced by many factors: religion, ancient cultures, cinema, other artists, etc. The images are combined and mutated and reborn with no regard to logic or their cultural origins."
Most recently, Russell has been creating with a different medium, bronze. In our current July/August 2020 exhibit you can find three of his most recent bronze pieces.
Continue below to read our interview with Russell and watch some videos of his bronze sculpture process.
I had the opportunity to cast some figures in silicon bronze with a couple very capable foundry enthusiasts. Casting bronze is a process that relays on team work and focus to what’s going on in the environment. I have been casting bronze since the early 90’s and it is important to participate in metal pouring in order to keep the skills intact, so that you do know what’s happening at all times. So when the stars lined up and I was able to have some work cast I jumped on it!