It is with great sadness that I am
writing to tell all of you that Bill passed away on May 12th due
to complications of cancer.
We collect our raw material – our palette of colors - at Montana salvage yards where heavy equipment of enormous size pick up, crush, and put into huge piles old cars, farm machinery, oil drums, kitchen appliances, and various industrial detritus no longer useful in today’s world. These hill size mounds of scrap and salvage are a rich bonanza of artistic raw material for us, and provide us with colors and textures not achievable with new materials.
With torch and a plasma cutter we cut the pieces into appropriate sizes, and bend them into shape by hand and hammer and/or with needed leverage of larger tools. We weld them into place on our sculptures with a MIG wire welder.
When identifiable, we indicate the provenance of the various metals used in a particular piece. Old kitchen appliances – avocado, white, almond; Shell oil drums, yellows and reds; old farm and ranch machinery weathered for decades in severe Montana summers and winters; old, or recently wrecked automobiles and trucks; discarded metal signs; worn out water heaters; air conditioners; rusted through steel roofing and siding, are among the many sources that comprise our palette.
We strive to make pieces that are unique, have unity, good color, interesting juxtaposition, animal dignity, and whatever meaning and mystery the baggage and imagined history the old and cast off metals might imbue them with.
© Bill Drum, December 2009