Last month I wrote about the new Young Creators Program that Art Around the Corner is launching this year, helping new student-sculptors get a headstart in the arts. We’re excited about the program’s potential, and the positive impact it will have down the road on young people’s lives. To highlight that potential, I present the example of a talented (and still young) artist with a fast-growing reputation who has graced public and private spaces in St. George with his wonderful creations.
As a teenager in California, Deveren Farley encountered an inspired teacher who opened up a whole new world for him, setting his feet on the artist’s path. Farley’s high school metal shop teacher, Mr. Hamilton, was clearly an educator that went beyond the call. He didn’t just teach students how to weld and bend metal, but introduced them to the finer points of design, how to blend form and function. Empowered by Mr. Hamilton’s encouragement, Farley created his first welded sculpture, a 7-foot metal alligator, and entered it into competition at the California State Fair where it won Best of Show in 2000.
Since that formative experience, Farley has forged a unique career blending the technical skill of a functional welder with the creative eye and sense of wonder of the fine art sculptor. After moving to Orem, UT, he opened a business building custom railings and home decor, while also creating a line of artistic pieces, welded from metal remnants and scraps. The popularity of his work began to grow, and his first exhibition was for the Parade of Homes in St. George, which further enhanced his reputation and connections to southern Utah.
For the past several years, Deveren Farley has submitted works to Art Around the Corner for the annual Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit, and two of his large-format pieces have featured prominently in the show. Farley’s 21-foot sculpture Silly Symphony is a visual celebration of music, a dynamic whirlwind of instruments and notes, currently installed in the North Main roundabout. And recently, The Band Concert, depicting a giant guitar with complex inner workings, was purchased by St. George City and installed in the Town Centre, between the library and the carousel.
And here’s where Farley’s story relates with the Young Creators Program that we’re just beginning here in Washington County. Young Deveren’s creative impulses were jump-started by a dedicated teacher who gave him an outlet for his artistic vision. Here’s what Farley says about that vision: “As an artist, I strive to take what others imagine and bring it to life for them by creating a piece that is as unique and beautiful as the idea itself.” Today his sculptures are inspiring others and some have become landmarks in our downtown. So what other young student artists are out there, waiting to be jump-started? Let’s find out, shall we?
Art Around the Corner is a registered non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the arts and enriching the community. AAC’s annual Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit features sculptures by nationally renowned artists on public display in the downtown area of St. George. All purchases from Art Around the Corner are tax deductible. For those interested in Deveren Farley’s work, the Young Creators Program, or in supporting Art Around the Corner, see www.artaroundthecorner.org.
Art Around the Corner
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