Artist biography for Sandy Graves artwork by Sandy Graves

Sandy Graves
As a child, born in Denver, Colorado, and growing up in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, I first displayed my work at the county fairs as a 4-H member. As I continued my education, mostly at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado, I worked in many different mediums. Sculpture was always a favorite and came naturally to me.



I see bronze sculpture as being a friendly and beautiful medium. I enjoy watching the public interact with art. In sculpture, viewers can walk around it, touch it, and become part of the artistic expression in a very personal way.



After graduating from CSU in 1993 with a degree in fine arts and a concentration in Sculpture, I began work as a high school Art teacher in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, and continued in that field for 16 years while I also did my own work mostly for myself. I chose art education as an occupation because I love interacting with people and have focused on the figure as my sculptural subject for the same reason. The figure is special because people react to it in such an instantaneous and personal way. I hope to remind viewers of special moments and memories of our human experience. Recently, I have been working in the abstract with horses being the subject. It is a familiar subject for me as I owned and rode horses as a young girl. They have always been in my art.



In 1999 I cast and sold my first Bronze. Since then I have continued to work in the medium realistically and abstractly. I have been awarded and have completed three significant commissions recently. The first was a portrait of the founder of the Lowell Whiteman School. The second was a life-size student for The Scottsbluff Public School foundation in Scottsbluff NE. The third and largest is my most current piece, created for the Steamboat Springs Chamber of Commerce, which has been installed on the Courthouse lawn, downtown Steamboat Springs. I enjoy the interaction with the individuals commissioning the work as we communicate to plan and build the visual and tactile form that expresses their individual sentiments.



In November of 2006 I opened the Artists’ Gallery of Steamboat with 26 other local artists. I have enjoyed great success in the last two years. Realism and abstract styles have both been popular for me. My series of abstract horses are fun to make and wildly expressive. I choose a part of the horse and begin my design there, allowing the piece to come into being naturally.
Another fairly new interest of mine is the creation of door hardware or “functional entryway sculptures”. An object that is touched daily by many people can be so much more than just a knob or a pull; it should be inviting and interesting, as well as comfortable to the touch.