For over a decade, Artisan Works resident woodworker Ross Rider has masterfully engineered and carved sculptures that immortalize everyday objects. One of the most popular artists at the sprawling museum space, Rider’s sculptural tributes to American iconic objects such as a Zippo lighter, Polaroid Camera, and Harley Davidson Motorcycle compare the intricate architecture of the sculptural to the industrially manufactured.
Rider, a former Kodak employee, began woodworking as a hobby after years of inspiration in his Father’s shop, moving from cabinetry to sculpture during his residence at Artisan Works. His latest project, a Model A Ford, is still in progress. Situated at the “Highway Entrance” of the building, one can observe Mr. Rider diligently sanding and installing wooden nuts, bolts, and automotive parts on a daily basis. He has been working on it for over two years, and probably has two more to go before its completion.
The sculptural replica incorporates over nine different types of wood including maple, cherry, white oak, mahogany, and poplar. Most astonishing is that Rider does not use any computer drafting programs; he measures each individual part by hand, capturing the subtle nuances. The cumbersome fenders of the antique truck have proven themselves to be the most difficult aspect of replication. The stitching of the leather drop-top is painstakingly hand-carved, and the perfectly circular wooden steering wheel actually rotates.
Artisan Works and Ross Rider would like to invite the community to share in his creative process. With a projected opening in 2010, weekend guests can get an early appreciation of the internal organs of the Model A by observing the real truck next to its smoothly and sensuously carved replica. Mr. Rider presides over his work on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and is available in his shop seven days a week.View This Artist's Collection
Elroy Blue’s bold acrylic paintings are charged with socio-economic commentary. The Rochester native works on his compositions at ARTISANworks on the weekends, and is well-known for his friendly dialogue with visitors. He often depicts scenes from his own experiences, as well as those that are universally familiar. Blue draws particular attention to one’s recognition of time, space, and environment. He often reveals the positive or negative consequences of our actions and interactions with one another. Blue’s work is reminiscent of Jean Michele Basquiat; he explores a tremendous amount of content in a modern, bold, and brightly expressionistic manner.
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