Through my work as the Project Manager for the Save Outdoor Sculpture! Program for Minnesota, (1992-96), I developed an initial appreciation of the American figurative tradition. With this newfound interest, through time I assembled a significant late 19 th to early 20 th century French and American bronze collection. Realizing that I would soon go broke if I didn't find another outlet for my passion, I decided to begin hands-on training in bronze casting. Previously, I had demonstrated a proficiency in the two-dimensional fine arts of photography, drawing and painting, had completed a degree in architecture, and felt that I would enjoy working in the three-dimensional discipline. In the spring of 2000 I began taking sculpture studio at the Minnetonka Center for the Arts.
My work has been most influenced by the graceful beauty of Harriet Frishmuth's (1890-1990) lyrical sculpture, and the dynamic gesture of Donald DeLue's ( 1897-1988 ) powerful mythical figures. Since I am relatively new to the sculpture world, my artistic philosophy is in the embryonic stage, but it is clear that my focus will be upon the athletic human figure.
Through my work I hope to express energy, balance, and joyful movement of the classical figure in a contemporary idiom-short on angst, long on visual captivation. As my art evolves, I anticipate that past architectural training and interests will influence my compositions, as they have in my second sculpture titled "Free Fall."
Thomas' first major bronze, The Gymnast, completed in 2001 was featured on the invitation to the 2002 Minnesota Sculptors show in Minneapolis ' Premier Gallery and the piece also received the shows highest honor. The first casting of The Gymnast is in a private collection in Chicago .
Also in 2002, a jury from the New York based National Sculpture Society selected Tom's second bronze, titled Free Fall, to appear in their Sports Sculpture show in Manhattan . Tom was one of 41 contemporary American sculptors to be represented in the national exhibition. In the spring of 2003, Free Fall was featured on the invitation to the Highlights & Shadows sculpture show at the Art Resources Gallery in International Market Square. Through that show, the sculpture received the ASID (American Society of Interior Designers) Choice Award.
His third work titled Seeking Center is a half-life sized male figure seeking balance on a ball. It is being cast in an addition of 5. The first casting is part of a private collection in Minneapolis .
Since the casting of his first bronze sculpture Tom has rapidly achieved professional and public recognition for the powerful design sense of his figurative bronzes. He is a member of the National Sculpture Society and presently serves as the President of the Society of Minnesota Sculptors.
See more of his sculpture and photography at: mnartists.org/thomas_zahn