Robert Rustermier

 

ARTIST’S STATEMENT

           My intent as an artist is simply to satisfy my curiosity about things that interest me in the world in visual terms --  some specific affinity between colors, shapes and planes, a certain effect of light on form, a sound, a phenomena, a concept or idea … and to then submit this fascination to a process of investigation and exploration intended to discover relationships that may have importance to me in context.  It is this simple, direct, intuitive approach to substance, and an open, broad approach to form, process, material and method, and moreover a dedication to a process of examination toward subsequent realizations and possible choices and potential meanings that I find most liberating, most satisfying, and most useful.

Statement specific to the Wax Panels

 

This work concerns only formal issues: of line, shape, color and spatial relationships.

           The "at 1/2 degree" body of work originated out of a desire to see the visual effect some semi-translucent material might have on a simple field of color when laid on that field in varying thicknesses.  The material selected to promote this effect was ordinary paraffin wax.  For example, a horizontal plane with a deep blue hue applied and tilted at some theoretic angle, say at 1/2 degree, with wax heated to liquid, poured onto this field and allowed to cool.  Where thin the image below the wax layer would appear more clearly visible; where more thickly applied a greater opacity would result, obscuring and modifying in interesting ways the way we see and interpret the image below.

           The current "lines and dots" series grew from this simple, essential visual curiosity.

           The frames the wax panels are cast onto are extremely well-built and use a 3/8" thick sheet of plywood that has a 3/4" thick x 1-1/4" wide interlocking oak frame screwed every 4” to the ply, and then a 1/2"-spacing wire mesh hardware cloth stapled to both sides of the ply before wax is then cast onto each face.  They are hung securely on the wall using 2 German-engineered, high-quality Floreat hangers (included) rated for either 30, 50 or 75 pounds each depending upon the actual weight of the panel.  D-rings mounted to the backs of the panel serve as the secure device from which the panels are hung.

ARTIST’S BIOGRAPHY

 

           Rustermier was born in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1957.  He took his undergraduate degree in Art at New College of the University of South Florida, USF’s honors college in Sarasota, and his Masters degree in Ceramics at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence.  After graduating with his MFA he was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship for post-graduate studio study at the Academy of Applied Arts in Prague and exhibited throughout the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland.  Having personally contacted and compiled an extension collection of slides, artist statements and resumes from a select list of prominent American ceramics artists, and under the sponsorship of the US Cultural Section of the US Embassy in Prague — a collection eventually donated to the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague for their image file — he then lectured widely throughout Europe on American ceramics.  In conjunction with that effort, and having collected hundreds of slides, artist statements and resume’s from Czech ceramic artists, he then lectured widely on contemporary Czech Ceramics throughout the Northeastern United States on his return.

           He and his lovely wife Courtney have made their home in Providence, Rhode Island.  Recently retired from a 30+year career in university-level teaching in the arts, his focus now is on full-time art-making.  He continues to exhibit widely.  His studio is located in Bristol, Rhode Island.