This year’s Artisan Spotlight series is the result of three simple questions. We hope you’ll follow the entire series and enjoy the variations on the themes within their answers.
We open the series with our chapter vice-president, Master Artisan metalsmith, Wendy Edsall-Kerwin.
What about your medium drew you to it initially and what’s kept you working in it?
While I did some casting in high school, I really wasn’t into metalworking when I went to college. I thought I’d major in drawing or photography. Our sophomore year we had to take intro classes in a wide variety of disciplines and I took jewelry making. There I learned fabrication techniques that I liked much better than casting. But it was when I took a metalsmithing elective that I found my calling. I had an actual moment while raising a sheet into a vessel where I just knew that this was what I was meant to do with my life.
What keeps me working in metal is the challenge. I’m still amazed that I can take sheet metal and turn it into a highly dimensional object. Now I keep getting bigger and bigger. I’ll have to learn welding soon.
If you had to choose a medium, other than your current one, what would you like to try and why?
I’m always interested in different media, though I rarely venture outside of metal. Lately I’ve been thinking about paper sculpture and how I could incorporate that into my vessels and wall pieces. But this is probably going to remain a pipe dream. I’ll be thinking about wood or glass in six months, hehe.
What are you most looking forward to at FIFC?
I like the interaction with actual people. I share my process and my work a lot online, but it’s nice to see people interact with the actual objects. Also, it’s great to see my fellow artists and all of their fabulous wares too!
Follow Wendy on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/WendyTEdsall.Kerwin?fref=ts.