Gerald Walburg | Artist
Widely identified as a sculptor who fabricates work in steel, Walburg works in two-dimensions and other three-dimensional media as well, including pieces fabricated in brass, bronze, copper, aluminum, and clay. Commonly categorized as a non-objective artist, there is an inherent figurative underpinning of Walburg’s works: formal relationships that reference human forms as well as a conceptual humanism and political liberalism that require some effort on the part of the viewer to uncover.
Walburg’s large scale Cor-ten steel works from the late 1960s brought him national attention, resulting in an invitation to represent the United States at the Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan, along with fellow Americans Sam Francis, Isamu Noguchi, Kenneth Noland, and David Smith. However, despite his early success, he did not retain the same level of recognition and visibility as his illustrious colleagues. Not given to self-promotion, he nevertheless has continued to work prolifically in his Sacramento studio for some four decades, producing flawlessly-crafted sculptures that combine beautifully finished surfaces with formalist elegance and potent symbolic content.
Walburg has enjoyed the luxury of following his own muse rather than responding to market forces—an economic function resulting from his full-time teaching responsibilities and lack of ongoing affiliation with commercial galleries. To this end, he has synthesized his background in industrial design and drafting, and assimilated the fads and movements of post-War art, while developing a sculptural iconography and personal vision that is uniquely his own.