Bernard Klevickas is a sculptor who utillizes industrial processes in an expressionist manner to create objects of meticulous refinement with an interest in exploring the possibilities of surface and form. As an aspiring artist developing his own sculpture over the past 22 years Bernard has at various times fabricated sculpture for the artists Jeff Koons, Louise Bourgeois, Frank Stella, and others. He has a manufacturing certificate in CNC (computer numerical control) machining and manual lathe and mill operation and a Bachelor of Fine Art degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His sculpture has won many awards and has been shown indoor and outdoor in numerous exhibitions in New York City, the New York Hudson Valley, Chicago Illinois, West Palm Beach Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Dallas Texas, Istanbul Turkey, Venice Italy, and Bermuda.
I am interested in the processes and efforts of manipulating material. I have chosen to use metal in most cases because it has certain characteristics that best represent my expertise and experience. Metal has the ability to be shaped and retain that shape, this does not come about easily but requires heavy machinery and thus careful considerations and intense labor. I have an obsessive nature and I am drawn to certain forms because I feel they can express a multiplicity of information yet in an abstracted way. I often use complex curves, waveform shapes and undulating recursive patterns as references and metaphors to physics and psychology. Waves are a spatial form that can relate to thought as in states of emotion, rhythm, and the cycle of life and it can relate to matter as in water waves, hills and valleys, radio waves, electrical waves, wave probability theory, and etc. It is a place where matter and thought can meet and through my efforts as an artist be perceived by the viewer of artwork who can appreciate craft.
This art is an exploration into the aesthetics and nature of surface and form. My interest is in the process of creating a three dimensional surface from a two dimensional plane and often involves forming sheet metal under pressure between two mated forms to create compound curved surfaces. This is a way of shaping space in sculpture whereas more traditional practices are reductive or additive. By shaping a thin surface both an inside and an outside becomes visually accessible. I often refine the surfaces to a high polish because of an appreciation for the way light and shadow reflects and creates an illusive, complex array of patterns. In the development of this work I use the most advanced computer three dimensional modeling software, computer controlled machining processes, industrial powder coating, and professional grade automotive painting processes that I can find access to. Time is spent learning new fabrication techniques or computer applications in order to more accurately represent and express the emotion that each artwork calls for. I study patterns and processes that are repetitive and asymmetrical utilizing them to create flowing elegant shapes while striving to express unique emotion through the forms. It is in this sense that I consider it a form of expressionism, however due to the nature of the materials used it is a prolonged effort that requires much planning and engineering. My influences are organic material, fractal patterns, liquids, plant-life, industrial design elements, various machines and manufacturing processes and the topography of forms such as the human body, automobiles, and the landscape. My art is not about art directly and in such does not fit as easily into the post modernist idiom as other work may, instead my art is about physics and explorations into consciousness constructed with an appreciation for craft with the intention to express emotional intensity through a language of pattern and surface undulations.
All life, Everything; exists as a wave. Consciousness is an indeterminate thing that causes all to vibrate with life. This life is the universe. It is me, it is you, it is the dog the plant the potato. All we collective see, feel and think are perceived in this rambling, slippery expanse of matter that individually ends at the furthest reach of each individuals personal vision, but is extended and multiplied by the shared senses of all conscious beings propelling us forever onward in a moments passing in which every second is an infinity lost, gone forever, but reborn as the next moment Swelling and shrinking carrying all, everything with it. A star out there in the sky may not fit the conception of "alive" but it is an integral part of this life, where the basic element of carbon that our bodies are constructed of is made by the continual exploding and renewing of stars. I am, You are, We are an organism looking at it's own inside through our eyes. An emergent consciousness contemplating the fabric of its own existence but the fabric is forever changing undulating bulging and shrinking and growing. Near becomes far, left curves to become right, a seamless reality that the mind captures in parts, Or a partial world that the mind strives to make complete. In that neither here nor there, yet alive strand of consciousness is my personal desire to form a connecting bond in-between the thought and the bulk, matter shaped by thought curving toward matter shaping thought.
I want to create something that is beautiful; it begins as simple as that. I gather all the knowledge of materials and all the skills needed to make any thing I imagine. Within my mind is a maze, think of the folds of brain matter as being tiny corridors in which electrical impulses wander around and consider as many possibilities as are available to it and in memory and in relation to the contemporary world; also, not unlike a river with many tributaries, some of which dry up and others which form anew twisting outward; again, not unlike tree branches dividing and reaching to the sun which is a star which bring us back to carbon: All the possibilities that can be found yet each path is bordered and counteracted from the boundaries or limits of opposing forces. As much as possible I like to be the laborer, the maker of objects. I am interested in using machines and tools and computers in the process as I see them as extensions of myself- a better pencil or piece of charcoal to draw with. The first known images by early humans were drawings on cave walls of the animals around them and of human handprints; I'm not so different from that in that I am using the known technologies and materials around me in order to draw shapes only that today there are capabilities to draw in 3 dimensions in virtual computer worlds and then use developed materials to make objects of contemplation. I am not interested in representing or recreating anything that already exists. I am curious about the micro and macro scales of things that hold our world in place yet I do not desire to recreate scaled representations of them. I do not think nor would I want creativity to be removed from my interpretation of reality and think that it is possible to communicate experience and knowledge through an individualized language.
There does not seem to be a single point of logic from which I can progress from in an ordered way; there are rather many counterbalancing points. The moment after I have a thought of a theory, thing, or potential as being or progressing a certain way, I can then see it from a different point of view and then another one and another one and each as valid. I want an art which springs forth with a urgency of its own, but that is not entirely true, because I also want to have conscious control. I want to be influenced by nature, but not to imitate it. I want to create from the heart but not sentimentally. Somewhere in-between two extremes of thinking and action is is a narrow winding road or a balancing point; an elegant solution to a paradoxical problem of developing objects that while unusual and familiar at the same time may touch on the sublime and allow a viewer a new perspective or experience. There is not a specific intent I have in mind other than to elucidate the manipulation of the material itself and in this there is a certain pride in the capacity of the human mind to have developed such materials and to make the tools and equipment required to manipulate it. In a way the work becomes its own excuse for being and I am the craftsperson seeing the project through, yet in another way I am utilizing the freedom of personal expression.