Artist Statement of Aaron Van de Kerckhove
I became interested in art, metalworking and sculpture at an early age, encouraged by my father who is a prolific abstract painter. In 2000 I graduated from The University of California, Santa Cruz with a degree in Art. For the last twelve years I’ve grown my studio in Watsonville, CA. into a fully equipped shop where I create large-scale metal sculpture.
My process usually begins with sketching and drawing ideas on paper or cardboard that I then cut out and piece together to form a small maquette. From the scale model, I can create virtually any sized sculpture.
I enjoy working with cor-ten weathering steel, which has a high copper content that forms a protective layer of oxidation on the surface that prevents further corrosion. Other metals I create with include steel, stainless steel, bronze and aluminum.
Sculpture to me, is directly influenced by the human figure and the natural landscape. I believe a sculpture should be able to stand alone in nature, its proportions harmonized with it’s surroundings. I create many kinetic pieces and my work is often interactive with the elements or the observer. A few of my more prominent artistic influences include Alexander Calder, Mark di Suvero, and Richard Serra.
My work can be found in many private collections across the United States as well as in public spaces in the San Francisco Bay area and beyond.
Born in Laguna Beach, California in 1973, Aaron P. Van de Kerckhove spent his childhood playing with dynamite, fiddling with gadgets, and wreaking the general havoc that boys do. His parents, artists themselves, always encouraged his drawings and interesting assemblages. While earning his degree at the University of California, Santa Cruz his forms began to take dynamic shape as he accomplished his first serious large scale kinetic sculptures.