Lloyd Klassen

ARTIST BIO

Lloyd graduated from the University of Winnipeg with an honours degree in philosophy. Though a self-taught carver/sculptor, Lloyd admits to having a natural inclination and talent for carving from very early. He learned woodworking by working under other craftsmen, gradually evolving into creating fine furniture. His love of woodworking has definitely influenced his approach to sculpture, and his love of form has definitely influenced his woodworking.

“I like the notion of blurring the distinction between art and craft, without losing the craft”.

ARTIST STATEMENT

Lloyd is a sculptor/carver working primarily in wood. His expressive sculptures are mostly abstracted figures, faces, gestures, with the material being as vital to the artwork as the subject itself: the grain of the wood, the texture, the warmth of tone and the play of colour, the softness or hardness of a line. “Truth to the Material” as Henry Moore said. For Lloyd there is a constant tension between the natural and handmade elements working to uncover something of the essence of the material itself, as well as expressing something uniquely and delightfully human.

He draws inspiration stylistically from the work of Henri Moore, although he finds much affinity with Constantin Brancussi in his treatment and reverence for the material and the medium. Brancussi too was first and foremost a carver.

“I believe that the love and energy that I put into a piece stays with the piece. There is a spiritual dimension that enters, that I can only describe as getting out of the way. This is a spiritual, not a psychological reality. Although I often start with a clear idea, another dimension enters and something marvelous happens. But for this to happen, there is a discipline. There is a constant honing of skill and craft. The hours of practice cause the body to become an instrument, thoughtful without thinking. There is then only the body and the spirit. There is a purity to this that in our culture, singers and musicians in particular can more easily understand. I have heard this described as “the music playing you”. I think all true craftsmen understand this at some level. I believe that all true art comes from this place”.

“This getting out of the way is perhaps the hardest thing. The piece in the end is secondary but still essential. The body is always the testing ground for the spirit. The physical expresses an inner reality. My desire is that each piece, although pointing to something, does not take a person away into the symbolic. Rather it stops you up, touches something and draws you inward to ignite the life within which is so very different from simply living; reconnecting us with that mythic consciousness that was so present to us before scientific materialism became the dominant worldview. Beholding beauty does this, participating in goodness does this, and touching truth does this”.

Lloyd’s works, both commissioned and non commissioned, are in private collections throughout North America.

For sale

Previously sold