T H E E L E G A N C E O F F O L D S
One day I was taking a stroll down Santa Fe's gallery-filled CANYON ROAD, and standing tall and proud outside the SELBY FLEETWOOD GALLERY was a magnificent bison, looking at first glance as if folded from giant sheets of paper.
That's part of the magic and charm of a KEVIN BOX sculpture. "It looks like paper, but it's not. It's what draws people to the work, " explains Box who has a wonderful home/gallery/studio in Cerrillos, New Mexico - just 20-minutes outside Santa Fe -that he shares with his equally-talented wife Jennifer.
Box trained as a graphic designer, but well into his career he had an epiphany, realizing that all his hard work would eventually end up in a landfill. What he wanted was for his creative work to have permanence. "Art is one of the treasures of time, connecting you with your ancestors and allowing you to create for people who aren't even born yet," says Box.
To achieve that longevity, he switched to Fine Art and did printmaking and monotype and then apprenticing with a foundry casting bronze sculpture. "Casting is like publishing," notes Box, "just in 3D."
Along the way he began paper folding. "People said it was like origami, but I didn't know what that was," remembers Box, who has taken this ancient art of paper folding to a new level, creating elegant metal sculpture.
Table-top bronze ponies
The paper is then un-folded to reveal the creases and the back is coated with layers of wax and manipulated and stabilized into the final shape.
Each sculpture begins in the studio and is then out-source to the foundry for casting into museum-quality aluminum, stainless steel or bronze. The work then returns to the studio for hand-finishing - welding, sand blasting and painting.
Large works like Pegasus (above) are fabricated in several pieces and then welded together. And while many of the sculptures are one-of-a-kind, multiples can be made by creating a ceramic mold and then pouring and casting them at the foundry.
C O L L A B O R A T I O N
Box embraces the collaborative process. A favorite collaborator is Robert J. Lang, one of the world's leading masters of origami, with over 500 designs cataloged and diagrammed.
The origami crease pattern created by Lang for the cranes.
"Sculpture is a team effort and I enjoy working with other artists," says Box, whose most constant collaborator is his lovely wife Jennifer. "In the beginning Jennifer just managed the business, but slowly she began to immersed herself in the creative process as well. "
The Box squared signature is imprinted on all their collaborative pieces.
E X H I B I T I O N S
Currently - through October 25th - THE SANTA FE BOTANICAL GARDEN is presenting 'Origami in the Garden', a large-scale sculpture exhibition created by Box. The show-piece of the exhibit is a 25-foot tall sculpture encompassing 500 white cranes mounted on black marble.
Photo courtesy Box Studio
KEVIN BOX STUDIO & GALLERY
Call for an appt. to see the gallery and tour their sculpture garden.