Hi! I'm Kay Minto, the rock welder. What, you may well ask, is a rock welder?
Aside from the obvious, (I weld rocks together) it's a title I earned from the welding guild at Lassen College. It was
there I began the experiments that led to welding directly on rocks. At first I tried limestone, marble, granite and
sandstone. And then one day I picked up a piece of lava rock. Eureka! Lava rock, already fired in Mom Nature's
furnace, handles the expansion and contraction of hot metal very well.
I particularly enjoy the juxtaposition of the highly technical, precise skill of TIG welding
with the base material of primitive, convoluted, emotionally charged lava rock.
When working on a serious series, such as Integuments, Elements of Change or Impediments, my
starting point is often a word I've discovered while cruising through the dictionary. I've found that I tend to
explore the relationship between interior and exterior--the implicate and explicate order (the soul hidden beneath the skin.)
The sculpture becomes a form of communication involving the head and hopefully, the heart of the viewer.
I've also discovered the importance of balance in my life. If I dwell too long in the
serious side of life, I become morose. And so the lighter side refreshes and restores me and becomes manifest as such
creations as the Prehistoric Lava Beasts, Saber-toothed Tiger, or Which Came First.
My morning ritual of Tai Chi, (I've been a teacher now for many years,) not only balances and
integrates me, but is a reflection of the way I create sculpture. The Chinese concept of Chi is that of an energy that
underlies and interconnects everything. When I make art, I strive to do so in an environment of communication, or dialogue
with the materials and the concepts. A piece will evolve or change (as do I) during the process. It is very different
from working from a maquette, simply enlarging a predetermined form. Spontaneity, flexibility and change are factors
that develop in this dialogue and lead to an exciting evolution of the idea, and often, the sculpture and myself.