Mingum Metal

Metalwork by Yates Spencer


Garden Art


Decorative Art


       My work is a search for beauty and humor using contemporary and original metalsmithing ideas and techniques. It has grown from my desire to use the plasticity of metal to create beautiful forms and textures in a modern metalsmithing studio, experience in the craft, life, and some ideas from geology.

       Many of the forms in my work have evolved through processes I've developed using hot metal and space to form themselves. A significant characteristic of these processes is that ideas from geology have often developed into organic forms. This look is closely related to and influenced by the controlled energy and organic feel of forged metalwork throughout history. However, the metal displays a distinct and lively mien when it has been used to form itself with the techniques I've developed.

       I believe that being a metalsmith includes showing potential clients the time and skill required to produce quality forged work and sharing one's work with other smiths in a manner that helps to develop the craft . The following paragraph contains links to my attempts to do both of these at once. These essays and demonstrations cover very little basic metalsmithing (which I have devoted several years to trying to learn), but they do not assume any smithing knowledge either. I think they will give a person with no prior understanding of metalsmithing an idea of the thought, energy, and craftsmanship involved in my work.

       The essay Deformation discusses some ideas from structural geology that I use in thinking about how metal changes shape as it is worked. Smushed and Unfolded Coils and Twists photographically describes some of the processes I'm working on. Photographs of the work are divided into four sections. Both Furnishings and Garden Art contain work I am currently producing in quantity. Sculpture is unique, non-functional pieces. Decorative Art is functional pieces I plan to reproduce unless otherwise noted. Cube Squish is a video demonstration of the forging of a bowl from a three inch steel cube.

        Thank you for your visit. I invite you to send me comments or to request more information.



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