My training and personal development have led me to believe that humans surpass biological processes by creating. The desire to create is the vehicle by which we, as humans, extend our minds and souls beyond the limits of our physical selves.
Through the material and creation of the work, I consider the complexities of the cycle of life. I recognize the truth that we are more of the natural world than of the created world. I parallel the ephemeral nature of wood to the experience of life and ask the viewer to consider the stages of life that are often overlooked by society. I have a deep appreciation for nature’s beauty and rather than working against the grain, I work with it.
Gustav Reyes places great importance on creating jewelry that demonstrates a deep appreciation and consideration for our natural world. To create his work, Gustav repurposes salvaged wood. He has incorporated wood from a bass violin and extra wood obtained from other wood workers. The use of such woods is a reminder of the past, present and future. He considers the past life of his materials and thoughtfully incorporates them into his work. In addition, Gustav uses 80% less waste through his production methods. His work is hand formed by implementing a cold bend process. He finishes his pieces with all natural bee’s wax, leaving the wood looking rich and beautiful. Gustav Reyes is dedicated to preserving Nature’s infinite beauty through his conceptual work and his awareness of our world.
Gustav was exposed to the creation of art as a young boy on the southwest side of Chicago. After working long hours as a laborer, his father spent his free time creating jewelry. This special time passed watching his father would be some of his happiest childhood moments. As a young man, Gustav attended the Art Institute of Chicago where his horizons and understanding of art were greatly broadened. He also spent time at the Chicago Bauhaus Academy where he developed a strong understanding of and appreciation for furniture, cabinetry and the finer aspects of woodworking. His formal training, hands-on experience, and years of dedication to his craft have allowed him to find the point where nature breathes through the form, striking a balance between the contemporary and the ancient and crafting fine art that is deeply personal, contextual and alive.
Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts Shop, Philadelphia, PA
El Museum del Barrio, New York, NY
The John Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA
The Met Opera Shop Collection, The Metropolitan Opera, New York, NY
Art Gallery of Ontario Musee des beaux-arts de l'Ontario Shop, Toronto, Ontario Canada
SFMC+D Museum Store, San Francisco Museum of Craft+Design,San Francisco, CA
Illinois Artisans Shop, Chicago, IL
Akland Art Museum, The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist (August) / Trends: Wood by Annie Osburn
Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist (August) / Wood Working Tips for Jewelers by Gustav Reyes
NICHE Magazine / Reclaim, Reuse, RECYCLE
The New York Times / Warm, Honest, Wooden
Richmond Bride / With This Ring
1000 Creative Reuses
Chicago Sun Times / Jewels of the City
Woodshop News - WITH THIS RING…