In 1974, as a young boy, I became fascinated with the 100 m.p.h Chinooks of my Boulder, Colorado origins, and I hand-built electronics to measure these devastating blasts of weather.
Through my teens, I studied the experimental turbines of the Rockwell wind energy test site near my home, and I built whirligigs inspired by these unusual, functional windmills. All of my engineering and fabrication skills came from repairing broken bicycle frames at the bicycle store I worked at from junior high through college.
In 1994, eight years after I graduated from the University of Washington with a BFA in photography, I revisited the whirligigs of my youth, combining the idea of an elegant weathervane with the whirly gigs I had always made. A big influence on me was the elegance of the static 1994 weathervanes of James Eaton who proved that industrial processes and interchangeable components could be wonderfully artistic.
Today, my work is installed in all kinds of climates and seashores all over the world. My pieces include public and private commissions and work for people like you, who find my distinctive sculptures a perfect complement for their homes.
What exactly is interactive art? How do I blend mechanics and aesthetics? What do I convey through my kinetic sculptures? These are the questions I have pondered throughout my career as an artist.
I create my sculpture to interact with people and solve riddles of landscape both interior and exterior. Using a varied palette—electronics, illustration, the camera and mechanical systems I work very hard for elegant solutions for demanding problems of space.
It is not always easy to blend functionality with form. Only a few of the kinetic sculptures I dream are ever realized.
Fabricated by hand
Each design starts as a rough sketch on paper. Periodically I sift through my sketches and execute the most intriguing. From there I work methodically: sizing the parts, figuring the mechanics, perfecting the rotations, developing the prototypes.
When the design is done, I print the final drawings at full scale. Then I engineer and make the parts with a combination of industrial processes and hand working, this includes every piece: pillars, metal elements, glass cups, hubs and transitions.