Professor Gary Wertheimer graduated from Brooklyn College with a bachelor’s degree in art in 1974. In the summer of 1973, he attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine where he met visiting sculpture instructor Philip Grausman.
From 1974 to 1984, Professor Wertheimer worked as an assistant to Grausman in Washington, Conn. It was there he learned the traditional techniques of bronze casting, metal finishing, repoussé and stone carving. In 1984, he received a two-year teaching assistantship from the University of Michigan where he earned his Master of Fine Arts in sculpture. He has been teaching sculpture, two dimensional design, art appreciation and liberal arts core courses at Olivet College ever since.
The universal struggles of birth, life and death are the primary motivations for Professor Wertheimer’s realistic sculptures. He draws inspiration from commonplace activities in the animal and plant kingdoms and re-presents them as visual metaphors for our own lives; in doing so, he joins the catalog of image-makers from virtually every epoch and culture that sought to affirm the bond between human beings and the natural world around them. The process of conceptualization, particularly the challenge of marrying media to subject, is one that Professor Wertheimer finds both alluring and demanding.
Professor Wertheimer creates skillfully-crafted works in bronze, marble and limestone, often combining materials that cleverly suggest the subjects they are meant to portray.