Robin & Ted Metz: Partners in Whimsy and Industry
January 2 - February 26
TED METZ Brief Biography
Born in Ohio, Ted Metz received his BFA from Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia and the MFA in sculpture from the University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina. He joined the faculty at the University of Montevallo in 1973 and retired as professor Emeritus in 2016. During his tenure at the University, Ted has received many teaching awards including: University Scholar, Distinguished Teacher of the Year, Outstanding Commitment to Teaching, and Alabama Professor of the Year, a national award presented by the Carnegie Foundation.
Creatively, Metz has been successful in exhibiting his sculpture in numerous exhibitions, including those in Venice and Cortona, Italy, and the National Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC. He has been recognized and has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and has been awarded the Visual Arts Fellowship from the State of Alabama in 1986 and 2014. He continues to be a productive sculptor producing smaller indoor works while also pursuing opportunities for large public commissioned work.
Ted and his artist wife, Robin Nance Metz collaborate on functional and sculptural ceramics and maintain their studios in Montevallo, Alabama
For the past fifty years I have been producing sculpture. I was fortunate to have made my living as a university professor which allowed me to pursue my work regardless its financial success. I make sculpture because I have to. It makes me whole.
There are three interrelated themes that run through my recent work in sculpture. They are: The Layout series, The Complicit series and Honoring the Trades series. The Layout series is about all the preliminary work, the design, engineering, measuring and etc. that takes place before anything is actually built or extracted from the earth. The Complicit series acknowledges that there are always consequences for what we harvest from the earth and that we are all complicit in the enterprise. The Honoring the Trades series is about paying tribute to the manual trades.
I enjoy using a variety of materials, new and repurposed, antique tools, cast glass and cast metals and industrial techniques in the fabrication of my work. Craftsmanship and detail is extremely important as is honoring the materials and techniques used in production. I do not to paint or otherwise surface the materials, choosing instead to allow the materials to exhibit fabrication techniques and display their inherent characteristics. The rust on repurposed steel for instance speaks to its unique history in some other forgotten application. This approach to materials gives the sculpture a dated look. This is enhanced by the effort to design the work as if it was produced during the late 19th century.