Brian Swanson's Background

My artwork has evolved into a recording of history on several levels. A working career, including drafting, machinery manufacturing and many phases of construction, have been interspersed with studies in art and sculpture. Combining these experiences with a growing conceptual sensibility has led to the creation of artwork rooted in my past, as well as an interest in product design and the machine age. With the concept of "quality" as a hallmark of the machine age, I have focused on function, diversity, form and style as aspects of the period from mid-19th to mid-20th centuries.

The sculptures are composed of stock steel shapes, such as bar, woven wire cloth, perforated sheet and often combined with found objects--components of machine tools, appliances, automotive, agriculture and hand tools.

My self assigned task is to combine these parts into interesting objects, often functional, that illustrate the thoughts of the designers of components; that evoke a sense of history, solve a problem and perhaps inject a bit of humor; all within the context of quality. My designs are collaborations with those designers that solved their problems long ago. The accomplishment of this with elegance and complexity are the markers that my sculptures represent.

He received an MA in sculpture in 1980 at Central Washington University, a BA in art with teaching certificate in 1974 at Western Illinois University, and an Associate in Art degree in 1970 at Rock ValleyCollege, Rockford, Illinois.