Douglas A Hebert
Paper Clay Aberrations
As far back as I can recall my artwork has centered on my own imagination. Although I derive most of my inspiration from animals and organic forms in nature, I habitually examine the question, “what if”? That inquiry sparks a sort of randomness in my brain limited only by the imagery that is invented in my mind. The result is my work.
My recent work combines a complex array of form and texture with a very controlled, frequently complicated , hand-painted acrylic finish. In contrast to the end product, however, the idea behind each sculpture is really very simple. All of my pieces begin with the concept of one existing animal mounted on a base the resembles topography found in nature such as trees, log, or coral. The terrain is generally quite textured (but not always) and practically never mirrors the animal’s natural habitat. When creating the creature itself, I make a boundless attempt to augment and distort its structure and surface until it is virtually unrecognizable from the beast it once was. I take the very same drastic approach when selecting the final color application and finish. The only exception being my early, single, solid color, glaze work which feature a very conservative color choice.
Douglas A Hebert loves all things visual arts- drawing, painting, and sculpting. But, inspired by his college art instructor and mentor, John Wittersheim, sculpting captured and kept his heart. Influenced by surrealism wherever it can be found in the art world, he hopes viewers “… interpret my work with an open mind and take away a slight sense of bewilderment.”
Doug grew up in Berkley, Michigan- a Detroit suburb where the economy and jobs were driven by the auto industry. In Berkley, a career in the arts raised eyebrows. Still, Doug and his dream were well supported by loving family and friends and he successfully completed his BFA in drawing from Siena Heights University in 1999 and graduate work at Wayne State University. He received his teaching certificate at Wayne State in 2006 and moved to Phoenix, Arizona where he teaches art at Hurley Ranch Elementary and Middle School and adult hand building and sculpture at Desert Dragon Pottery in Phoenix.
Doug openly shares stories of his 15-year struggle with alcoholism that left a large gap in his life in which he did very little artwork and had no shows or exhibitions. But, Doug is catching up. He is today an award winning ceramic sculptor earning First Place in the Arizona Artists Guild Associates Body of Work Juried Exhibition and was an AAG artist of the month candidate. In 2015, Doug became a board member and sculpture group head at the Arizona Artists Guild. When asked what he loves most about being an artist, Doug says, “I just love being in the studio and working- and my work continues when I go home to my makeshift studio/apartment.”
Wayne State University, Teaching Certification, Art Education, 2006
Siena Heights University, Bachelor Fine Arts, 1999
2015, “Body of Work” Juried Exhibition, Arizona Artists Guild, AZ
1999, BFA Student Exhibition, Klemm Gallery, MI
Works held in several private collections in the United States
2007-Present, Art teacher, Hurley Ranch Elementary (k-8)
2012-Present, Advanced Hand building and Sculpture, Desert Dragon Pottery
2015, Sculpting techniques in paper clay workshop, Arizona Artists Guild
2015-Present, Program Director, AAG Sculpture Group, Arizona Artists Guild
2015-Present, Board Member, Arizona Artists Guild