Iron will, sculptor Tom Joyce, Trend Magazine, Christina Procter

Iron will, sculptor Tom Joyce

By Christina Procter

Trend Magazine, 2016

"When you heat iron to a certain point, it moves like water," says Tom Joyce, whose 45-year career could be seen to span several lifetimes–each a current of multidisciplinary investigation into the core substance that lures him. When he speaks of iron, a kind of amazement overcomes the soft-spoken and bright-eyed artist, who will set you at ease as quickly as he'll surprise you with the quiet brilliance that earned him a MacArthur Fellowship. Joyce works with iron, and that is to say he grapples daily with an element that defines us. Iron oxygenates our bloodstream, he marvels, and has a 4.5-billion-year-old connection with the planet's earliest days, having formed much of Earth's core and provided the gravitational pull that would one day keep humans tethered to the planet.

Top Ten 2015, Tom Joyce - Aftershock, Art Ltd., Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Jon Carver

TOP TEN 2015: Santa Fe/Albuquerque

By Jon Carver

Art ltd., November-December, 2015

Aftershock ranked in top 10 Santa Fe/Albuquerque exhibitions for 2015. “Local genius blacksmith reinvents the wheel in fissured steel.”

Beyond the Wall of The Mint Museum, Tom Joyce sculpture, Rebecca Elliot

New Tom Joyce Sculpture Will Commemorate Both History and Future

By Rebecca Elliot

Beyond the Wall of The Mint Museum, Fall/Winter Issue, 2015

Thicket, a seven-and-a-half-foot square block composed of stainless steel rods passing through cast iron hammer heads, is a fitting tribute to the community impact of the Mint and Levine Center for the Arts (which is also home to the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture, and Knight Theater). The abstracted hammers are a metaphor rooted in Tom Joyce's practice as a blacksmith that began 45 years ago with an apprenticeship at age 14.

Tom Joyce - Aftershock, James Kelly Contemporary, Art Ltd.

Tom Joyce: "Aftershock" at James Kelly Contemporary

By Jon Carver

art ltd. magazine, November-December, 2015

Joyce received a "genius grant" from the MacArthur Foundation in 2003. The rest of this (perfectly packed) show exhibits that same bright light. The motif of circularity–formally, metaphorically, and through the recycling of materials (so fundamental to the life of metals)–ripples through the various media on display. A video projection onto cast cement, and light box images of cross-section scans of the smaller ironworks on display add intriguing elements of light and color to the play of sculptural volumes and scale that keep coming full circle. Large panels of MDF composition board, beautifully burnt and branded by rings of hot metal, derived as framed drawings done during forging, and abstractly rendering macro-cosmic constellations or close-up clusters of micro-bacterial life, recall ever so slightly Charles Ross's Year of Solar Burns. Both artists share the same spiritual fascination with interfacing earth and astronomy. After all, iron on earth, Joyce's signature material, is elemental stuff for both stardust and steel.

Tom Joyce, Aftershock, James Kelly Contemporary

Tom Joyce at James Kelly Contemporary

Aftershock, Press Release, August 1, 2015

In essence, the pieces in the show have arrived not only after years of observation and tangible experience, but also through imagining what hurling bodies of iron in space, super frozen in extreme celestial environments experience when they impact our atmosphere. In an instant they are super-heated from friction and begin to shed billions of years of skin as they shatter into oblivion or are reformed by the penetrating and irreversible displacement of its once solid mass. Some of the works expose an erosive power that humans have not enough years in a lifetime to watch occur naturally. Other forms interpret the rejected iron "offspring" of manufactured objects forged in industry that exert both positive and negative effects on the planet.

Man of Steel sculptor Tom Joyce, Santa Fe New Mexican, Michael Abatemarco

Man of steel: sculptor Tom Joyce

By Michael Abatemarco

In addition to sculpture, Joyce presents a series of photographic works in Aftershock: CT scans of molds made for his Core series, small sculptures of intersecting, cylindrical forms. The scans depict the negative spaces inside the molds showing a layered reverse image of the sculpture positive, also on view, made from them. "In looking at the CT scans, I'm able to see all the layers at once as a kind of transparency - the CT scans are illuminated from the back like X-rays, but with more information. Microscopic slices of the object are collapsed into a transparent view and you're able to see the positive, inside out - the hollow space that would later be filled with iron."

Tom Joyce, Aftershock, James Kelly Contemporary, THE Arts Magazine, Susan Wider

Tom Joyce: Aftershock

By Susan Wider

THE Arts Magazine review

Perhaps the most breathtaking works in the show are Aureole I and Aureole II. They are displayed indoors and it's hard to imagine how they got there. Weighing in at around six thousand pounds each, these ... stainless steel circles are over six feet [in diameter], and are forged from industrial remnants heated to near-destruction. The resulting surfaces resemble charred campfire logs; the kind that you know will disintegrate if you pick them up. No danger of that here, but there is an irresistible temptation to count their growth rings.

Tom Joyce

Tom Joyce: Interview

By Lowery Stokes Sims

"The suite of sculptures, Two to One, that you created for the Museum of Art and Design (MAD), has been installed and has been received well by the public. It has taken a number of years to arrive at this point. Tell us how the commission came about and how you approached its resolution."   –Lowery Stokes Sims

"Former chief curator, David McFadden, during a visit to my Santa Fe studio in 2007, saw a pair of sculptures titled, Two to One, and suggested commissioning a cluster of them for the new location of MAD that would open in 2008. We discussed placing seven sculptures in a meandering pattern on the sidewalk beneath the shade of newly planted trees on the Broadway side of the Museum. Because the sculptures appear soft and clay-like to touch, we felt they would be inviting to pedestrians while en route."   –Tom Joyce

Tom Joyce, Layered Strength, Gussie Fauntleroy, Santa Fean Magazine

Tom Joyce: Layered Strength

By Gussie Fauntleroy

The wondrous thing about iron, notes Tom Joyce, is that it almost never gets thrown away. Each time iron is forged and reused, something of the material's previous life is literally folded inside the new. It's what Joyce calls the "ferrous DNA" of iron, and it adds layers of often hidden-meaning to his art.

The Governorís Awards for Excellence in the Arts, New Mexico, Tom Joyce

The Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts

Governor Bill Richardson, State of New Mexico

The Governors Award Reception, Sept 2009

Since 1974, the state's artists, filmmakers, musicians and arts contributors have been recognized through the Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts. Past recipients of the award include Judy Chicago, Eddie Dominguez, Laura Gilpin, Agnes Martin, Ali MacGraw, Patrick Oliphant, Eliot Porter, and Georgia O'Keeffe. This year, Governor Bill Richardson honors 6 tributees, including "Tom Joyce, internationally recognized as both artist and scholar, and locally recognized as an unselfish mentor and community unifier".

Tom Joyce Forging His Own Destiny, Santa Fe New Mexican

Tom Joyce Forging His Own Destiny

By Santa Fe New Mexican

Santa Fe New Mexican, Pasatiempo, September 25, 2009

Santa Fe sculptor, blacksmith, designer, and educator, Tom Joyce, is no stranger to special recognition and accolades. To name a few, in 1989, he received the highest honorary fellowship into the Worshipful Company of Blacksmiths based in London. It was the first time the fellowship had been awarded to a non-Brit since it was incorporated in 1571.

Tom Joyce: Broadband Virtuoso by MaLin Wilson-Powell, Metalsmith Magazine

Tom Joyce: Broadband Virtuoso

By MaLin Wilson-Powell

As the MacArthur Foundation fellowship comes to an end this year, their no-strings-attached funding has increased Joyce's appetite for inquiry, innovation, and action. Although he never did manage the five-month sojourn to Africa he originally planned, during his spring 2008 visit to that continent, he cultivated new connections and renewed longstanding ones. Most significantly, in his work with metal, the MacArthur support meant Joyce successfully explored a dramatic scaling up of his sculpture and challenged himself to find ways of using his expertise within the environment of a large industrial forge.

om Joyce The Iron Iceberg, Sculpture Magazine, Kathleen Whitney

Tom Joyce: The Iron Iceberg

By Kathleen Whitney

When the Twin Towers fell, Tom Joyce was in New York for an exhibition of his work at the Museum of Arts and Design. Several months later, a friend sent him a vial of ash from the site. On the one-year anniversary of 9/11 while on a John Michael Kohler Art/Industry Residency in Wisconsin, Joyce decided to blend the ash into a cast iron alloy that included sand from a mandala made by Tibetan monks in Santa Fe and blessed soil from a shrine in Chimayo, New Mexico. Using this symbolic fusion of tragedy and faith, Joyce designed and cast a [three dimensional] vesica pisces, a 3000 year old fish shaped symbol. Common to both Christians and Muslims, the vesica pisces also represents the mystical Pythagorean union of the divine with the world of matter and creation.

Tom Joyce Sculpture, MaLin Wilson-Powell, Rotary Foundation for the Arts

Tom Joyce: Sculpture

By MaLin Wilson-Powell

Tom Joyce's art embodies its meaning, as all art must do. In the case of the artist's recent series of sculptures and wall pieces, titled Sotto Voce, his ideas arise from hard-won, hands-on intelligence. Joyce has refined his concepts over decades of forging iron. His mastery in crafting a leaf, a hinge, a tool, a door handle underpins his nimble skill in working with tons of hot metal. In a society that by and large has little respect for physical work, unless it is athletic performance, Tom Joyce distinguishes himself as a maker of authoritative, sophisticated, and physically engaging art.

Tom Joyce at Evo, Art in America, Arden Reed, 2006

Tom Joyce at Evo

By Arden Reed

Although Santa Fe-based sculptor Tom Joyce recently won a prestigious MacArthur Fellowship, it was his reputation as a longtime blacksmith that gained him admission to an Illinois firm that consumes 250 million pounds of metal a month, turning out work for various industries. Joyce diverted some of its products from circulation and melted down scrap to produce several new bodies of sculpture.

Tom Joyce Forging Ahead Looking to the Past, Elizabeth Cook-Romero, Santa Fe New Mexican, 2006

Tom Joyce: Forging Ahead, Looking to the Past

By Elizabeth Cook-Romero

Joyce has forged iron for more than 45 years. His sculpture and functional architectural details are in the collections of The Detroit Institute of Arts; the de Young Museum in San Francisco; the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston; and the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Renwick Gallery in Washington D.C.

Tom Joyce, Swords Into Plowshares, Ellen Berkovitch, New York Times, 2005

Swords Into Plowshares

By Ellen Berkovitch

War has been very much on Tom Joyce's mind lately. For this artist-blacksmith, the relentless images of sniper fire and exploding bombs in Iraq testify to metal's enduring, yet endlessly mutable role in human aggression. "The solutions blacksmiths arrive at tend to be the same century after century after century - the practical solutions for developing ... more efficient weapons," said Mr. Joyce, who has been forging... sculpture... and public art in Santa Fe for 28 years.

Tom Joyce Sotto Voce, Rinchen Lhamo, The Magazine, 2005

Tom Joyce: Sotto Voce

By Rinchen Lhamo

Tom Joyce's most recent forged-metal pieces, ironworks, whose abstract qualities of design, though immediately captivating in their own right, have an intense vitality that reflects a deeper, fuller meaning as well. That his work has been consistently interesting, robust, and invigorating is no surprise, given that Joyce has been honing his intimate relationship with fire and iron, since he was thirteen.

Tom Joyce Genuine Work, Sculpture, Kathleen Whitney, 1999

Tom Joyce: Genuine Work

By Kathleen Whitney

According to John Cage, "the object is a fact, not a symbol." Because of their facticity, objects become inductors for associations with ideas or actual symbols. It is this grounding in "fact" that gives the objects of metalsmith, Tom Joyce a particular conceptual stability as they move with no apparent conflict between function and aesthetics.