“Jimmy, Jimmy, are you listening?”
“I’m always listening….”
Always thinking…. Always questioning….
Jim West Sculptor makes the connection. A profound understanding of all things human provides and holds space for the viewer to connect to what they already know. The depth of our respective journeys is paradoxical, unique while still a shared and common experience.
The inability of others to perceive the inner workings of a young Jim West during his earliest, most formative years, was a painful yet necessary piece of the puzzle. We are all in process. Every one of us feels to our core. All are being molded and uncovered by life and circumstance.
Depth, Contemplation, Interpretation.
“I’m always listening.”
A good teacher answers a question with a question, evoking a pause, sometimes a pivot. West hits this mark and goes beyond, as did voices of our past. A Caravaggio or Picasso looked at the questions themselves differently thus finding new answers.
“Questioning the question?”
As West matured, he gained a better understanding of his own internal workings, and the unfolding of his relationship with the outside world, communing with and refining his own unique lens. His innate aptitude for seeing the unseen, then masterfully translating the essence of the sacred moment into creation is a special gifting that shines through.
Bringing the paucity of a classical art education to his Art has shown to be an adept advantage. He reaches us because he’s one of us. His hope is on clear display through his advocacy for the Arts and for Art Education. Jim’s passion is to create Artistic vehicles to be seen and appreciated by the masses, allowing individuals to experience and be touched in new and different ways, on many levels. West intentionally designs Art with many layers to be peeled away, questioned and interpreted, by today’s diverse audiences as well as by future dynamic generations.
“I’m always listening.”
Contemporary Kinetic Sculpture
Medium: Bronze, Steel, Aluminum, Kinetics
Dimensions: 19′ including 42″ Sphere, 2500 lbs.
McIlroy Center for Science and Innovation, Science, Technology & Innovation Facility
Gold LEED certified “green” building with sustainable features that reduce environmental impact while creating teaching opportunities.
2.C is about seeing in a different way; more depth, physical mass, spirit and space. Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change. Thousands of years ago indigenous people called this ‘looking through the fire’, not just seeing the surface, but feeling the dynamics beneath. This sculpture incorporates a straight and curved line in front of a sphere representing Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity and how light and time bend. The third line takes the shape of a spinal cord symbolic of our humanity. This sculpture moves and changes as do our own perspectives throughout our lifetime. 2.C is a compelling equation impregnated with questions to be answered.
Contemporary Narrative. Figurative Sculpture
Medium: Cast Bronze finished in Gold Patina
Dimensions: Torso portion: 110”x79” Weight: 950 lbs.
Legs portion: 92”x58” Weight: 1000 lbs.
Creativity Commons, ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks
ART TO STIR THE SOUL
EXPERIENCE SPLIT INFINITY
A dramatic bronze daring its viewers, young and old alike, to THINK!
To think outside comfort zones, to THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX.
A multi-faceted piece. Einstein is emerging from the floor, pulling on a rope that is tied to his own foot.
Sculptor Jim West recognizes that we all struggle, our lives can be a challenge, much like Albert Einstein who also experienced loneliness and struggle. This dramatic bronze sculpture dares to ask important questions of us. How can YOUR differences, your uniqueness, take YOU to the next level? Dare to be different! Celebrate your uniqueness. Who will be the next genius? DARE TO BE DIFFERENT. THINK.
Medium: Rusted Metal
Dimensions: 11 1/2′ x 16′ x 4′
Beautiful. Haunting. Interactive. Dramatic. Spectacular.
All words to describe OUR PATH, a monumental, contemporary outdoor sculpture delicately laced with intricate water-jet carvings celebrating the natural world.
Mother Nature … truly the ultimate Sculptor. I am but her messenger.
Inspired by Caravaggio’s Doubting Thomas. His work challenges our perspective on our relationship with God, viewed not from the heavens, not from a ceiling of a church but from a sinner’s perspective.
I approached OUR PATH, this intense environmental Sculpture, with a powerful message, AS A USER. What will our Carbon Footprint be when we leave Mother Earth?
I went back to the forest, I knelt on Mother Earth and I sketched the outlines of her plant life. I took the outlines of the plants and water jet cut them into metal to create the plant forms. Sunlight goes through the plant forms and creates a design on Mother Earth. The shadows around the light move every day and through the seasons. Also, there are three sets of footprints laying nearby. If you were to stand on the first set during the Summer Solstice the shadow would touch your toes. If you were to stand on the other footprints during the Winter Solstice and Equinox the shadow would touch your toes. These footprints represent our carbon footprint.
This epiphany, this realization, alerts each of us to our monumental responsibility and obligation to this environment, our Mother Earth on which we exist. The existence of future generations remains in the balance.
Our responsibility. What will be left in Our Path? Despair and Anger.
Despair and Anger
2017 Public, FL
Medium: Steel, Bronze, Lighting, Poetry and Sound.
Dimensions: Experience Light, Sound, Poetry within a 10’ x 12’ darkened Space from a perspective of loss and the lack of power to control. Appreciated from the Perspective of the Loved One, Not the Warrior.
When you first look at Despair And Anger. War you see one face. After careful consideration, you see two distinct emotions simultaneously. Listen to the prose. Become absorbed.
The powerful narrative emphasizes that too many circumstances and emotions are not always within our control. As Human Beings we have the capacity to feel more than one emotion at a time. The lack of control, knowing a potential extreme outcome and inability to react create in us Despair, Anger.
This abstract, raw and intense 90-second multi-sensory experience incorporates a focal point. A contemporary bronze sculpture, accompanied by sound and light ignite in us our own unique, visceral emotional reaction.
Despair and Anger. Feel Its Pain.
Bronze Sculpture – Grand Museum and Library, Philadelphia, PA
Medium: Bronze Monument Sculpture, Concrete
Dimensions: 9’ high x 12’ wide
Sculptor Jim West was asked to design a storyline about Masons, always embracing collaborating with historians, West came up with this historical bronze sculpture, representing a bond between two countries and three men. The story begins when Benjamin Franklin went to France as a diplomat and was influential in negotiating the involvement with the French in the American War of Independence. During this time, George Washington was Commander in Chief of the Continental Army of the American Revolution. When the French Alliance sent their troops, they were led by Gilbert du Montier Lafayette. Lafayette gifted George Washington an apron; a fabric that bonds the two countries together. The monumental statue depicts George Washington presenting that apron to Benjamin Franklin. The apron is displayed in the Grand Masonic Museum of Philadelphia, tours available.
2017 Public, Sturgis Museum, SD
Living on the edge gives you a high like no other, but death is always there. I don’t care if it is going fast on my bike or another addiction, The Edge can be a slippery slope.
The pregnant nude on the bike represents life. The skeleton, death. Their dance represents the rush and danger of living on The Edge.
In The East, Brother Ben Franklin
Bronze Sculpture – Grand Museum and Library, Philadelphia, PA
Medium: Bronze, Stainless Steel, Marble
Dimensions: 9’ x 17’
Research for this installation project began with the relationship between Artist Jean Antoine Houdon (1741–1828) and Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790). Houdon’s bust of Franklin was the first of his canonical portraits of leading figures in American history which is on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Artists over the years have referred to this sculpture not only as iconic but as the true likeness of Benjamin Franklin. West patterned the portrait of Franklin in In The East, Brother Ben Franklin, after this Houdon bust. Not only recognizing Franklin but honoring Houdon and their friendship by adding the date they met on the collar of the 17′ Bronze. Also during intensive research, artist West created a symbolic ‘nine line’ graphic on the sculpture representative of The Muses or Nine Sisters, the inspirational goddesses of literature, science, and the arts in Greek mythology. They were considered the source of the knowledge embodied in the poetry, lyric songs, and myths that were related orally for centuries in these ancient cultures.
No Recess Please
Medium: Steel, sand, marble, brick, fiber
Dimensions: 12’ x 6’ x 8’
A child’s swing hangs empty and lifeless from steel I-beams that support a small scale reproduction of a fiberboard sided local library of decades old design. The small library’s vertical and horizontal I-beam support is purposefully erected and deliberately fashioned in the shape of a “hangman’s gallows” and this structure is solidly mounted in the cold earth under the child’s swing with a rugged base of stone, brick and marble moorings.
The child’s play-swing was once the joy of a school playground that was full of promising and laughing children until one fateful day, the swing would stop forever. For it was on that tragic day that one very bright young girl of barely 8 years, awkwardly fell to the ground. Her would-be celebration of another glorious school lunch recess, crashed abruptly to a brutal end. So vivid was the image of the adults and children alike as they encircled the motionless young girl that lay before them. Every one of them stood by in shock as their sense of helplessness sank deeper into their thoughts with every second that passed. The quick arrival of the flashing local ambulance and the on-boarding of this broken little girl seemed like it was an eternity. Then sadly, it was only three days later that the final page of this horrific story was first revealed to the family of the little girl and then to her teachers and schoolmates. The beautiful and promising child passed away during her third night at the hospital. [read more]
Medium: Bronze Sculpture
Dimensions: 6′ x 3.6′ x 2’
From one view she supports him and from another he supports her.
2011 Public ~ Sculpture
We can learn from the balance between the past, present and future.
FRANK WEST (1932-2005) always looked to the past with respect. Changes he made to a building always considered their impact upon the present and the future while keeping traditions alive.
We hope that in the future when people look at this sculpture they will learn from Frank West.
“There is always a balance, not just in community and architecture but in our lives.”
SHADY AVE – Jim West: Finding a Balance
Pittsburgh City Council Proclamation
Point of View
Figurative Sculpture, Park, and Landscape Design
Medium: Bronze Monument Sculpture, Stone, Concrete
Dimensions: 9.5′ x 105′ x 45’
This bronze monument on Pittsburgh’s Mount Washington depicts a meeting in October 1770 between George Washington and Seneca leader Guyasuta. Once allies, then veterans on opposing sides in the French & Indian War, the two met 17 years later down the Ohio River and sat overnight at council fire to revisit their past and debate the future of this highly prized region. Though they held very different ideas about the fate of this area, they parted on friendly terms. Called “Point of View,” the sculpture by James A. West captures a moment in time between these two formidable men whose actions had a huge impact on Pittsburgh, Southwestern Pennsylvania and the country that would be America.
The piece marks the westernmost end of the Grand View Scenic Byway and Park, an official Pennsylvania Scenic Byway. It was dedicated on October 25, 2006 by Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and Warren Skye (HoinJaGwaGohn), along with period re-enactors, the artist, Mt. Washington Community Development Corp., local residents and members of the Seneca Nation.
We all set out on the journey of life in search of our own ‘right path’. We discover challenges and opportunities, and react in our own unique way. In a real sense, the choices we make are a reflection of our inner selves, and they reveal our true identity ~ our heart and soul.
“The Search” is my interpretation of that journey, portrayed as a young man reaching into the water. As he stretches his hands beneath the surface, he is reaching, fishing about, unsure of what he will find. As he looks down, his own reflection in the mirror image of the water shows him the way. I feel “The Search” conveys the idea that we already have all that we need, deep within us. Our everyday actions, large and small, on the journey of life will reveal our true nature, but all the answers already lie within. What we truly seek is inside each of us, waiting to be discovered through our own searching.
2005 Private ~ Sorrow and Despair, Abstract Sculpture
2005 Commission ~ The One, Awarded at Bethesda Art Show
Private Collections in Italy and England as well as nationally throughout United States.
Jim West understands and oversees each stage of the process, from initial concept through the installation of the finished works of art. West pays intimate attention to every facet of the sculpting process, drawing together the best possible team. West prepares for each work with extensive engineering and design analysis. He meets with historians and experts, collaborating with curatorial, committees, fabricators and city planners. West presents a series of maquettes of the sculpture before meeting with enlargers and foundries. Teaming with boards and committees, art commissions, and architects, large scale art installations are successfully managed through completion and beyond.