Conception to Creation

Sculptor and thinker, this artist takes his molds further and will continue his studies at UCLA

After four years spent perfecting his craft, 22-year-old art major Eric Vrymoed is leaving City College to continue his education in art, focusing on sculpture and art history.

Vrymoed, who has been chosen as an Outstanding Student of the Year in the art department, said he spends six to seven hours in the sculpture lab every day.

"He's here all the time," said Scott Dosch, another art student. "He's a lab monster. He's putting out a lot of good pieces."

Vrymoed uses steel, bronze and aluminum in his art. However, he has not been involved in cast until a year ago, combining two types of casting, said Prof. Edward Inks, who has been Vrymoed's teacher in sculpture and had him as a tutor.

"He picks up skills very quickly, and he picks up new techniques with a little bit of research, Inks said. "He's hardworking, driven, very focused and self-disciplined."

Vrymoed has an avid interest in art history, particularly the works of Louise Bourgeois and Martin Puryear. He is also fascinated by human psychological reactions to intimate space, talked about in The Poetics of Space by French philosopher Gaston Bachelard.

It has to do with how we experience volume in our thoughts, Vrymoed explained and pointed to one of his sculptures on the wall.

"Imagine yourself as being small," he said. "A lot of my works deals with internal pressure and the duality of external pressure."

Vrymoed uses many opposites in his art. He mentioned notions like hot/cold, closed/open, functional/dysfunctional and the Jungian anima/animus.

"I mostly focus on the psychological response of being/nonbeing," he said.

Vrymoed said he has had very supportive parents. He first became interested in art when he did a lot of drawing in high school, he said.

Inks helped Vrymoed build a portfolio for 4-years schools, the professor said. He was recently accepted into the art progam UCLA, where he will be majoring in Art Studio with a concentration in sculpture beginning in the fall. It's one of the best art schools in the country, Inks said.

"The best thing about Eric is that he is extremely outgoing," Inks said. "He works well with all the other members of the art studio."

Vrymoed has an art exhibition at Casa Magazine's gallery, running until May 29.

©Torgny Lilja/The Channels (2009)