Local sculptor Duncan Lewis does welded metals he calls “industrial folk art” and more | Arts & Theatre

“I think art shouldn’t be this elite, inaccessible thing,” Lewis said.

Q: How would you describe your art?

Answer: I am a sculptor who has worked in several different styles or genres over the years. I am working on a commission in welded metals. It is in a style I call “industrial folk art” because I’m using a lot of industrial scrap metal to fabricate a life-sized alligator for someone’s garden.

I studied figurative art for a long time and still do “realistic” bronze castings, primarily expressionistic animals and birds. I have also done large-scale outdoor abstract sculptures and fountains, wood and stone carving and ferrocement pieces. I guess you could say I’m all over the map.

I’m interested in community art as well, and I am involved in a couple of collaborative projects at present. A recent example of this type of work is in King. Adjacent to an ADA-compliant playground in that city’s Recreational Acres Park, we made a “miniature mountain range” representing Pilot Mountain, Sauratown Mountain and Hanging Rock with the help of volunteers and donations.

Q: How have you evolved as an artist?

Answer: Once I had started selling my work professionally, I was primarily a gallery-oriented artist. I may have done occasional commissions, but I was focused on making sculptures that I wanted to make, in the ways that I wanted to make them. I transitioned away from the commercial gallery scene, and for 10 years, I was a member of the Artworks Gallery co-op on Trade Street.