Boaz Vaadia: Artist Statement
"My work is based on the concept that man functions according to the same laws as all other creatures of nature. Therefore, the urban environment is not an artificial creation, but a natural habitat that we have created for ourselves. Through the exploration of the connection between man and nature, I create sculptures and environments that are contemplative and serene. The overall impact is of a warm and welcoming presence.
"The materials I use in my sculptures – slate, shingle, bluestone and boulders – are from the immediate area surrounding my studio in New York City. The slate roof shingles and bluestone are sedimentary rocks, which were formed by layers of sediment compressing over millions of years. They are used throughout the city for roofing and building and used in sidewalks, backyards and landscaping. Brought to the area by glacial movement during the Ice Age, the boulders in my work come from construction sites near my studio.
"I hand carve each individual piece of stone with a hammer and chisel, exposing the stratified layers. I stack these stone layers to create figurative sculptures. Although at this point the pieces stand by themselves, I bolt them together with threaded rods and glue for permanence and safety of the viewer. My process parallels natural transformations in stone and recalls ancient methods of construction that rely on the cut and weight of the stone rather than on mortar. The pieces are linked to natural processes and look as though created by wind, water and time.
"By using the natural forces of rocks, my work awakens ancient 'earth senses' that were slowly abandoned by man during his evolution to civilization. By carving the stone, I release its inherent energies. This stone sculpture now carries a direct message to the soul of the viewer. Man came from the earth and in death returns to it. I see stone as the bone structure of the earth.
"For select stone pieces, I continue the process by casting the sculpture in bronze, creating a limited edition of five to seven works. Bronze is a durable substance that expands the possibilities of placement of the work in public contexts while at the same time connecting the piece to the history of figurative sculpture."