by Richard Pietruska
My first passion was horses but reality set in and I knew that wasn’t about to happen where we lived... and then cars came along. My oldest sister married a GM car designer and I was hooked after looking at all the cool cars he had and had worked on.
In High School I received a scholarship in the Fisher Body Craftsman Guild after my second attempt at building a scale model car. Seeing that my brother-in-law went to Art Center, I figured that’s the place for me and a good excuse to leave the East Coast and head out to California. I studied Transportation Design and then Fine Arts for my Master’s Degree. Although I could paint and render, I was always more interested in 3D forms and sculptures.
After graduating I decided that I wanted to stay in LA and eventually found a part time teaching position at the Art Center College of Design in the Transportation Department. Years later I applied to the AFAS and finally got accepted into the group. Everyone of my favorite automotive artists, it seemed, was in the group and I felt honored to be among all of them. Every show at Pebble Beach was amazing and a challenge to see what I could come up with for the event. I was very happy and surprised to have received the Peter Helck Award three years in a row for my VERONIQUE Series, which are 3 of my favorite sculptures.
Now having taught full time for over 35 years, I still enjoy teaching and it’s a great feeling to have known so many famous designers from around the world.
Throughout the years, I have worked in many mediums including resins, fiberglass, automotive paints, bronze, stainless steel and carbon fiber. I enjoy including figurative elements into my sculptures, a relationship that still inspires me depending on the brand and type of vehicle. I still keep looking for something new to start on and see where the creative process takes me. In the end, I like to use my favorite line when discussing my work -FORM FOLLOWS FANTASY.