In the Studio with David Secrest
Montana is a quiet state. With a total population of just over 1 million it's easy to travel through the countryside without seeing a car for miles. David Secrest's home is located in Somers which is a 20-minute drive from Kalispell in clear weather. Somers sits at the top of Flathead Lake, the largest natural, freshwater lake West of the Mississippi River. Surrounded by snow-capped peaks the lake itself is an ancient remnant of the ice age and the massive glacier that carved it's way southward creating the 27.3-mile reservoir.
David's home sits on a hill just a half mile off the lake enclosed in a forest of spruce, elm and mostly fir trees. Two houses rest on the secluded property. One is David's three story home built by the hands of David, his father and David's brother when they moved to Montana in the 70s. The second home was constructed by David and his brother and serves as a guest house for visitors. Both homes resemble an instinctive sense for design that mimics the natural landscape.
This is the setting in which David makes his work. This quiet landscape offers isolation and solitude, both of which are driving forces behind his creative process. With David, everything is art. Whether it's cooking breakfast, chopping wood or forge welding in his studio. He's careful, meticulous and routine, giving each task the appropriate amount of precision. David's creative process and approach to his work are as spontaneous as a Pollock and as steadfast as the quiet Montana landscape. He sketches, eats lunch, reads a book and when an idea sparks he drops everything to work in the studio beneath his kitchen. His 1,000lb power hammer shatters the snowy silence on his 33-acre property as intangible forms become lasting patterns in iron.
In the winter of 2017 the Metal Museum sent their Marketing Coordinator, Houston Cofield, to Somers, Montana to document the artwork of the 2017 Master Metalsmith, David Secrest. These are the pictures from that trip.