Madden, Bob



“Stone sculpture allows me to speak in a universal language. Creating a stone representation of an idea, a concept, or a feeling for the viewer to interpret through their own experiences begins the unspoken dialog. Stone is my choice of medium because it is perceived as a hard, cold, and unfeeling material. But when stone is presented as a soft or complicated shape, a person will react with amusement and amazement that opens their mind to new possibilities and prompts them to reexamine their views on the broader subject matter.

Generally my work will alternate between two major themes; works which explore our place in the universe, concepts of space, time, destiny, and chance, and the second major theme of interpersonal relationships and the connections that bind people together. Keeping in mind the quote from Socrates, “The unexamined life is not worth living”, I strive to develop works which ask the viewer to look beyond themselves and see how they relate to the rest of humanity and where they fit in a larger universe. The underlying tone of any specific work may be designed to provoke amusement or serious reflection, but it’s during those moments that the mind opens up to new perspectives. This is the objective of my work.

Carving stone has been my passion for over 30 years. I think of carving stone as a negotiation with the universe; what I want the piece to look like vs. what the stone will allow me to do. It’s humbling to realize that the natural processes that create stone can take millions of years but if I’m impatient in my efforts I can destroy the natural beauty and character of the stone with a single careless hammer strike.” – Bob Madden

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