Archive for the ‘iron’ Tag

The Iron Men of Hattingen, Germany   5 comments

The Iron Men of Hattingen, Germany


Hattingen, it would seem, is a rather proud town.

Outside the old, walled section of the town stand these statues by Polish artist Zbigniew Fraczkiewicz. The iron men symbolize the battle for steel manufacturing in Hattingen. (In 1720, there were 52 operating coal mines within the municipal area and Hattingen became one of the first industrial cities of the Ruhr region. Steel production started in 1853, when the Henrichshütte was founded. The Henrichshütte became one of the most important employers of the whole region and dominated the town until it closed in 1987.)

The town of Hattingen was first mentioned in 1396, when the Duke of Mark granted permission to build a city wall. Today, Hattingen has a picturesque historic district with Fachwerk (timber-framed houses) built between the 14th and 16th centuries. The old city is still partly surrounded by the city walls, and provides a place for fascinating strolls through medieval buildings.

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Artisan Series: The Metal Artist   2 comments

Kirk Davis sparks it up in his ArtForms Studio in Morehead City, North Carolina


Meet Kirk Davis.

Just don’t catch on fire.

I met Kirk when we were working on separate projects in a large house renovation. The owner was recreating a Tuscan Villa/Castle/Art Gallery (I don’t exactly know how to categorize the place!) Kirk was fabricating and installing a large number of iron pieces, and Susan and I were creating decorative plaster finishes inside. Overall, our parts in the project took up a large chunk of 2009, and we were all appreciative of the owner’s desire to let artists do what they do best: Create Without Limitations.

Kirk, operating as ArtForms Studio in Morehead City, NC, designed and installed custom pool railings, huge exterior lamps, door straps and hinges, wine racks, Gothic gutters (to go with the gargoyles), window guards, and other important elements of the house. He wanted to get some pictures of his work for his portfolio, and I wanted to visit his studio to see where he works. This is the first image from that session.

I can appreciate how Kirk approaches his art. Anyone who puts such thought and effort into their creations, and strives to develop unique interpretations while living in a world of mass-produced garbage, has my support. Over time, we’ve all become accustomed to settling for crap products, so I celebrate those who won’t sell out their creative efforts just to make a couple of quick bucks.  Slow down, take your time, put care into your work, and it will be a reflection of who you are, and will serve as a footstep in the sand that lets people know, “I was here.”

From Kirk:

“As an artist, I am profoundly influenced by space and my surroundings. I endeavor to communicate to others the power of art objects, creating bold new works that make a positive statement and contribute to the overall aesthetics of life.

“For over a decade the focus of my work has been the design and execution of unique sculpture, furniture, and architectural metal work. I encourage a collaborative design process with clients so that they may understand the possibilities of material and thus commission a body of work that meets their specific aesthetic ideals.”

We’ll likely see more of Kirk and the art he creates in future blog posts. To see the kind of quality that Kirk produces, please visit the private gallery that I’ve set up for him, Located Here.


Taken from a single exposure: Nikon D7000, Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 lens at 45mm, f/7.1, 1/8s, 2EV. Camera mounted on tripod behind a piece of plexiglass, fired with remote shutter release.

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