10″ (H) – granite and stainless steel
37″ (H) – granite and stainless steel
9 1/2″ (H) x 7 1/2 (L) x 3 1/2 (W)
metal and stone
“Ribbon Dance I”
figure dimensions 7 1/2″ (H)
bronze with ribbon
“Ribbon Dance II”
figure dimensions 5 1/2″ (L)
bronze with ribbon
“Bird of Prey”
15″ (L) x 9″ (H) – granite and stainless steel
23″ (H) – granite and stainless steel
“Raven in Flight”
15″ (H) x 24″ (W) – granite and steel
16 1/2″ (H) x 18 1/2″ (L) – granite and steel
“In the Wind”
17″ (H) – granite and steel
7 1/2″ (H) – granite and steel
Tobias LUTTMER is driven by the desire to reach a balance between cubist abstraction and classical realism. This self-taught sculptor is a life-long resident of Calgary, Alberta and he lives his passion for creative experimentation.
Most of his pieces are created using indestructible materials which reflect Luttmer’s necessity for physicality. His process, generting dirt, grime, noise, smoke, dust, sparks and fire, is what moves his creativity forward and enables him to expresses his curiosity of human and animal forms.
With a true love of his craft he leaves evidence of his tools in his work as homage to the process. There is no certain ideal that the sculpture attempts to portray; rather Luttmer’s work depicts an evolution of form as it emerges from his materials. Each piece is taken to the point of release – where the line can go no further – which typically results in work on the abstract side of the spectrum.
Do your materials lead you to new content? How and when?
This is a tough question. There are so many things to consider. I recently had a beautiful white and black granite boulder that I thought was a snow fox. Once I had it up on the bench it very quickly became a snow leopard. So that is me intending to make something and the material suggesting it wants to be something else. It is sort of symbiotic, however, just as often it is totally intentional. If I want to make a sculpture that has fine detail, I will use stainless steel and my TIG welder. I could carve the same detail from wood or stone, I just prefer to do this in stainless.
Is where you find the materials important?
I spend a good chunk of time hiking in the mountains and love to collect materials from remote places. I’ll take photos of the area, then make a sculpture and be able to show the new owner where it came from. This is an important part of the process for me. On the other hand I can’t manufacture stainless steel, so I just order it from a local supplier.
Is there a point when the material limits what you are doing?
The material is always a limiting factor. It’s like a never-ending puzzle. What can I get away with before this will break? Or, how can I make this sculpture from these materials?
What else would you like us to know?
I love the process of making sculpture. I love the ringing sound basalt makes when you carve it with hammer and chisel. I love the dust and mud and noise when I carve with a chainsaw or diamond saw. I love the smoke and fire and sparks from molten stainless steel. I love the materials that I work with and the way they behave; the infinite ability to manipulate stainless steel, the polish it will take, the way it colours with heat; the strength and density of the grain structure of the beautiful black basalt column. It just begs to be carved to reveal the colour and figuring in a hardwood.