June 9, 2013#

Figure, Form, Function at Gallery 621


Jack Ruszel
Sculpture & Design

June 15 – July 28, 2013

Gallery 621
621 First Street, Benicia, California

Opening Reception: Saturday, June 15, 2013, 6-9 pm
Gallery hours: Thursday-Sunday, 12-6 PM and by appointment

Artist, craftsman and entrepreneur Jack Ruszel knows his way around wood. Since childhood, he has been fascinated by wood’s beauty and functionality; as an adult, it became his passion as a sculptor as well as his livelihood as a designer of wood products. Ruszel shows the range of his talents as a fine arts sculptor, through figurative and abstract pieces, carrying his aesthetic and craftsmanship into fine furniture.

His Figures are subtractive sculptures of sensuous contour and shadow.  His carving style is gentle and graceful, delicately balancing soft overall forms with sharp edged line. The artist emphasizes the asymmetrical turns and twists of the feminine body, while maintaining and highlighting the mass of original living tree.

Form is built in his geometric work, using straight edged rhombus shapes stepped and repeated, creating graceful curves.

Functional works include fine furniture designs. Ruszel’s Archer chair portrays the same qualities of sensual grace as his figurative sculpture, adding locally sourced urban lumber, and heirloom quality construction.

Jack has spent his life running Ruszel Woodworks, a small wood products factory located in Benicia. He is currently re-focusing the efforts of his company to train skilled factory workers as craftsman/artisans. A limited production run of his “Archer” chair is currently being used for that purpose. With the emphasis on quality of life and the value of craftsmanship, he envisions “small, and “local” as key ingredients to a sustainable future.

March 2, 2012#

Jack Ruszel profiled in the Benicia Herald

I DROVE OVER TO MY FRIEND Jack Ruszel’s Benicia home studio a few days ago to admire his latest wood sculpture, which he aptly calls “Corporate Giant.” It’s a large man squatting over a small planet, which is directly in his sights, if you know what I mean.

Read the full article here: http://beniciaherald.me/2012/02/19/a-different-drummer-corporate-giant/

February 14, 2012#

Gallery 621 Presents Jack Ruszel: March 1, 2012

GALLERY 621 of Benicia California, presents the solo exhibition: “Jack Ruszel – Sculpture”

Ruszel’s figurative works in wood range from alluring to the ironic. Expressing respect towards the living material…and an irreverence of humankind’s unsustainable gluttony, he plays with light and shadow to make a statement, ask a question, or simply delight in the joy of form.  Humorous, graceful, and sensual, his works are carved from wood, and yet, feel as if they were always there.

Jack uses figure as metaphor to explore concepts ranging from feminine strength and grace in the face of adversity, to war, greed, and other social blunderings. On one hand, delighting the viewer with the fall of light and shadow over a gracefully flowing figure, on the other, requesting the viewer to question our ironic human need to destroy the very things we revere.

Jack began his career at the age of 16, when he started Ruszel Woodworks, which he still runs in the Benicia Industrial Park. It wasn’t until he was 40 that he turned his tools to carving works of art.

Show Dates:  March 1, 2012 – April 1, 2012  

Saturday, March 3, 5-8pm

Gallery Hours:
Thursday through Sunday, 11am to 5pm
Art writers: showings by appointment

Gallery 621
621 1st Street, Benicia, CA
Visit www.Gallery621.com for directions and further information

September 14, 2011#

Now Open: Gallery 621

Gallery 621 showcases Benicia, California, as a contemporary center of working and exhibiting artists, and a community of arts advocacy. The gallery is dedicated to increasing public awareness of, interest in, and education about contemporary art within the community of Benicia and the greater San Francisco Bay area. Check out their website.

August 19, 2011#

Arts Benicia

For more information on the local art scene in Benicia, check out the Arts Benicia website. Read news and bios for Jack Ruszel and the many other artists in the community.

July 15, 2011#

Profile of Jack Ruszel in the June 2011 issue of the Benicia Patch

“When I sculpt I am drawn in and fascinated, inspired by the play of light and shadow. My sculpture, my work, is a kind of play that is inquisitive and explorative.”

Read the full article.