William Weissinger

William Weissinger
basalt on limestone base
& 3.5” granite paver
80” h x 18.5” w x 8” d
$3,600 SOLD
William Weissinger
71″ x 19″ x 6″ 
$3,400 SOLD
The Artist
I’m an attorney-turned-sculptor. The tension between Bill-the-artist and Bill-the-intellectual influences my art in a unique way. Sometimes I find myself pushed by the intellectual side of my brain to over-think what I’m doing. But then the right side of my brain draws my art back to the balance I seek.
This same tension is played out between Bill-as-realist (a lawyer is the ultimate realist) and Bill-the-artist. Back in 1911, Freud in his work “Two Principles of Mental Functioning” described this tension:
The artist is originally a man [sic] who turns from reality …, and who then in phantasy-life allows full play to his erotic and ambitious wishes. But … with his special gifts he moulds his phantasies into a new kind of reality, and men concede them a justification as valuable reflections of actual life. Thus by a certain path he actually becomes the hero, king, creator, favorite he desired to be, without pursuing the circuitous path of creating real alterations in the outer world. But this he can only attain because other men feel the same dissatisfaction as he with the renunciation demanded by reality.
While no one has yet elected me “hero, king, creator, favorite,” I love the power of the artist-as-creator.
William Weissinger
& cedar plinth
70” h x 18.5” w x 8” d
William Weissinger
12.5” tall x 12” x 9”
Perhaps you’ve seen the cartoon of Michelangelo finishing a sculpture of a figure with a final chisel-tap at a nostril – and the whole nose falls off.  This sort of disaster is rare for sculptors, but it happens sometimes if one is careless – as I was in using a power tool to polish a sculpture of two salmon.  When I was nearly finished, the sanding pad caught on the sculpture, and the head of the tool jumped.  The metal head struck the adjacent fish tail – which broke off.  Eighty hours gone. 
After the passage of time and some Scotch, I realized that an even better sculpture lay inside the remnants, and you see that now as Surge.  If you take a good look, maybe you can see what was originally the head of one of the salmon.  I’ve changed the configuration, though:  the original salmon-nose is now the point at which the pinned sculpture meets the base of black granite. 
Though Surge is nonrepresentational, in it I see growth from destruction, order from chaos, a wave’s power, or the surge of spring growth.  The sculpture may have a different message for you.
Two Salmon
Fish, because of their phallic shape, have a metaphoric meaning that includes sexuality and fertility, while at the same time they are a Latin Christian symbol for resurrection and immortality.  And for me, salmon have an additional meaning:  they can go where they want, when they want, until their genes force them home – an ironic twist that speaks to me because we think of ourselves as free but we live in a society where we struggle to define the appropriate limits on that freedom.