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For centuries, the blacksmith has been a master of utilitarian sculpture. Kings have called on blacksmiths to build gates and railings and furniture that have outlasted their royal selves by centuries. Today, the craft of the artist-blacksmith remains entrenched in that respected tradition: to create lasting beauty from iron. When it gets red-hot, iron takes on a malleable quality that, with the right tools and experience, can be formed into a limitless variety of shapes and forms. If you can dream it, it can be made. Once it cools, you can rest assured that it will remain intact for generations.
Paul Reimer began his career as an artist-blacksmith at the age of 15 when he apprenticed under master blacksmith John Smith of the Kootenay Forge. When he turned 19, fresh out of high school and already well-worn in the art, he set out on his own, taking over the blacksmith operations at Fort Steele, BC. After building the blacksmith shop there from 1 person to 7, he once again set out on his own, founding his own business which creates high-end architectural ironwork. This venture also allowed Paul to pursue public art opportunities in and around BC.
Today, Paul has 22 years of experience in the trade, every moment of which goes into his creations. His projects vary greatly in size, form and function, from a simple letter opener, to a 700lb sturgeon-nosed steel canoe (that floats!) created for a public art project. He takes inspiration from a variety of sources; architecture & design, culture, history, relationships and nature. His core principle as an artist is to strive to do what has not been done before, to make what has not yet been seen, in ways that have not yet been discovered.
2019 JOY, Canada House Gallery, Banff, AB