In my sculptural work, I aim to capture energy in motion – a frozen moment of time, which in German is known as an “Augenblick”. As an artist, I am drawn to steel as a material for both its alchemical properties and the duality of its nature. It is heavy material and yet can be transformed into delicate, visual compositions filled with ethereal qualities. The flowing visual lines of my work reference the motions that can be found in water, wind, earth and fire – the same elements necessary in creating these sculptures. This reflection on the process of the elements is exhibiting a transformative and alchemical energy. By using this time-sensitive approach, my inspiration is often guided by spontaneous intuition that is directing decisions about form, lines, and spatial vs. non-spatial relations.
Stefan Duerst is a metalsmith and sculptor whose work is inspired by the natural environment and an interest in human behavior. Born and raised in Munich, Germany, Duerst completed an apprenticeship in metal design, fabrication, and blacksmithing along with completing his Masters in Metalwork with distinction. In between schooling, he worked under a Master Blacksmith whose ability to realize just about anything he imagined in metal greatly inspired Duerst. The importance of achieving perfect harmony and minimalism within his sculptures is a guiding principle of Duerst’s work and an emphasis on clear lines and harmonious proportions is a common trait within his sculptures. These themes represent transformation and possibilities in the material and to a greater extent, the human experience.
Duerst’s currently lives and works in Ontario with his two children. His work can be found in numerous collections including the Foreign Affairs Department, Canada, the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis, USA, the City of Kingston, Canada, Queen’s University, Canada, and private collections in Germany, Switzerland, Canada and the United States.