Interview with Guy Zoller, artist and art educator

Mr. Zoller is a classically trained sculptor and art educator. He comes with a lifetime of experience in the arts, an MFA in sculpture, and is a highly skilled artist and an excellent teacher. I did a brief interview with Mr. Zoller about how he became involved in making art and how his career in sculpture relates to teaching and learning inside the classroom.

Mr. Zoller at CESJDS ceramics studio as a guest speaker, demonstrating hands-on, the entire process of sculpting a bust to ceramics students (December 2012).

Ben: How did you get involved in making art?

Guy: I really never took an art course until I was in college. I was an English literature major at Old Dominion University and in the process, I took art courses in the summertime. I eventually changed my major to art.

I was also in the army for 21 years.  I eventually got into art making and becoming an artist afterwards.

Ben: What do you find most rewarding about the process of creating and being an artist in the 21st century?

Guy: Two things – I love to teach. I was a teacher in the army and later on when I went back to art I loved creating and teaching at the same time.

Ben: What has been the most challenging aspect of being a sculptor?

Guy: I work in pottery and sculpture.  Nobody buys sculpture – you need floor space. Marketing and selling is the most difficult.  I don’t get it right all the time but the process is so engrossing and I stay at it because I stay so intrigued.

Ben: Could you share with us some of your ideas about sculpture as it relates to teaching in the classroom?

Guy: There are certain skills that need to be learned when trying to become a sculptor, different disciplines.  This is a tough sell in a postmodern world.  I’m not a post-modernist. It’s not something I understand very well. I want there to be rules and boundaries to what I do and my perception of post modernism is that there are no rules and boundaries. I want to know why something is art or why it is not.  It seems to be common sense that you want to focus on the things you want to apply to your visual medium.





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