The first three sentences of Fisher Stolz’s Artist Statement says a lot about his relationship to his sculptures.
“There is a point when an artwork becomes alive; the artist can feel it in the work. It seems to breathe, to begin a pulse. It becomes self-sustaining, taking on aspects of individual personality born from the artist, yet separate, with its own form, color, texture, and temperature. The idea has come to exist in mass, space and time.” – Fisher Stolz
Fisher is an Associate Professor of Sculpture at Bradley University, where he’s been for the past 18 years. He focuses on sculpture, but it’s an art form that came to him over time. A native of the Southeast, he received a bachelor of fine arts degree in graphic design from the University of Georgia. After a couple of sculpture classes and some time studying sculpture in Cortona, Italy, he was focused on sculpture as his chosen form of art. Fisher continued to hone his craft while sharing a studio in Atlanta before returning to the University of Georgia for a master of fine arts degree in sculpture. He explained, “By the time I was ready for an MFA I’d had a lot of sculpture experience.”
As a professor, Fisher divides his time between teaching and producing his own work. “We really enjoy what we do here,” he says about his role as a teacher. “It’s always exciting and we’re learning new things. It gives you an opportunity to always be thinking and problem solving.” One of his greatest rewards is “when the students finish a piece that’s a really strong work, and it’s something they didn’t realize they could do before. That really is exciting.”
As a sculptor, Fisher has created quite a few large scale outdoor installations, but also does small, pedestal sized pieces. And though his work is primarily abstract, he does some figurative work. A recent example is his large scale sculpture at Caterpillar’s foundry near Mapelton, Illinois of Vulcan, the Roman god of fire. He enjoys working with a wide variety of materials and frequently combines stainless steel with natural materials, such as limestone and marble.
Fisher enjoys all aspects of creating a sculpture, but fabrication remains his favorite part. “There’s a point when the piece is finished and it has a life of its own. That’s a real adrenaline rush,” he said. “It’s like a child in a way. It begins to have its own life and personality. You put it out there for people and it has its own existence after that.”
For more information about Fisher and to see examples of his work, visit his website at www.fisherstolz.com.