KOKOMO, Ind. – The Indiana University Kokomo community has the rare opportunity to gain valuable insight into the artistic process of metalsmithing. Award-winning artist Loring Taoka, who creates unusual art from everyday metal material, will present his work on Thursday, October 27, at 5p.m. at the Observatory.
“Taoka will be talking about his inspirations, how he comes up with his ideas, his research, and what it pertains to,” said Susan Skoczen, director of the Art Gallery. “Taoka is truly a metalsmith – one who makes objects as opposed to wearable jewelry – but also creates jewelry if his concept so desires.”
Taoka has won numerous awards and his art has been featured in exhibits across the country. His distinctive techniques are innovative and original to the craft of metalwork.
A demonstration of these metalsmithing techniques and student critiques of Taoka’s work will take place on Friday, October 28, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday, October 29, from 12 to 4 p.m. at the Fine Arts Building. The events are free and open to the public.
On Friday, Taoka will demonstrate how to fashion a brass bowl from sheet metal, using a method called raising.
“In the raising process, you do not cut or solder the metal, but you create its’ shape purely by hammering the sheet in such a way to make a vessel form,” said Skozcen. “Usually, copper is the preferred material since it is softer and more malleable. Brass takes a bit more effort and elbow grease, and Loring will show a technique that will move the process along in a quicker manner.”
Taoka earned his bachelor’s degree in general studies from the University of Toledo, and went on to the University of North Texas to earn his master’s in fine arts. He currently owns a studio in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Sponsored by the School of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Humanities, Taoka’s visit was made possible by an Applied Learning Grant from IU Kokomo.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.