Gateway to Montana's Artistic Legacy

by David Secrest

On loan from the Artist

Born in 1953 in Rochester, New York, David Secrest sold his first sculptural work while in high school. Over thirty years of constant experimentation and material manipulation had yielded an impressive collection of sculptural works from a diverse repertoire of materials including steel, iron, wrought iron,, and sand-cast bronze.
Surfaces are characterized by tessellated tile and pattern-welded techniques. While many of the works produced for exhibitions and commissions have been in metal, the artist's interest, practice, and technical abilities reach into various media and applications, including those found in woodworking and printmaking.
Continually experimenting with the refinement and manipulation of the structure of metal, Secrest actively produces sculpture for galleries and clients both regionally and across the nation. Works may be found presently at Gail Severn Gallery in Ketchum, Idaho. Most of his works reside in private collections, while several earlier works may be found in the art collection of the University of Montana in Missoula.

David Secrest has maintained a permanent and full-time metal sculpture studio since 1978 in Somers, Montana.

Artist Statement
I have grown to understand my work as having been a path from intrigue to intimacy with the material and tools that I use. From this has grown the understanding of form as it relates to structure -- and texture as it relates to the perception of form.
My intimacy with and growing mastery of metalworking gives me a foundation from which I can explore techniques and processes that have not yet been explored or utilized in the field of creative arts.
The richness of my relationship toward most any work of art has as much to do with the maker and the making as it does with any physical aesthetic or functional concerns. Natural objects provide the basis for my sense of design; however, it is the conceptualization of structure and and the intentional manipulation of of materials that holds my interest. If I were to name a mentor, it would be the material itself, its history, structure, and working characteristics.
The finished work functions as a vehicle for a process that, at times feels like an indulgence. I find myself intentionally slowing the process down to savor some obscure moment. It could be as inconsequential as the way the tools have arranged themselves, or the eloquent execution of a solution to a difficult problem.
My intention is to keep questions open.

Quiver as displayed during the George Gogas exhibit 2008

 Quiver, looking along the north gallery windows to the west.

Quiver as displayed during the 20 Artists/3 Days show 2008