“When now and again a stone falls into place that is utterly inevitable, I feel I am suddenly standing under a shower of grace. For an instant I feel inevitable, too.” – In the Company of Stone
ART-BUILDER, SCULPTOR, STONE-WORKER, WRITER, TEACHER, LECTURER, working in the company of stone.
Dan Snow is an art maker in the outdoors. In broad terms, his work is classified as found-object assemblage. Free stone construction is the mode of making he employs to devise site-specific works of environmental art. He combines mastercraftman skills with sculptural artistry to bring new geologic forms into the natural world. The works stand alone a sculpture, and come alive when engaged by visitors to their environs. Many pieces are large enough to be walked through and climbed upon, inviting the same participation as do their greater surroundings. Snow’s forty year career of creating in free stone has taken him across the USA, Canada, the UK and Scandinavia. When he and his wife (and project manager) Elin Waagen aren’t traveling for public and private art commissions they reside in Vermont where Snow was born and raised. After attending Pratt Institute and assisting sculptors in New York for four years he returned home to begin making both practical and purposeless free stone constructions. His permanent installations number in the hundreds, and counting. In 2001 Snow authored In the Company of Stone. His second book Listening to Stone, came out in 2008. His creative process is the subject of the documentary film Stone Rising. A Mastercraftsman with The Dry Stone Walling Association of Great Britain and the Dry Stone Conservancy, Snow lectures, leads workshops and writes about the art and craft of working with free stone in the landscape.
© Dan Snow. All rights reserved.
Praise for In the Company of Stone:
“The prose weaves between practical and poetic with the same gentle twists as an old field wall, inspiration to armchair waller and budding artisan alike.”—Washington Post
“Dan Snow is a poet, and artist and a craftsman who bring life out of stone. His narrative tells a story on several levels: the wall being constructed, its inspiration and its deeper meaning as metaphor. I am grateful to have encountered his work.” – Amazon reviewer R. Leng
Praise for Listening to Stone:
“What a pleasure to have the tales of these new wonders told, and in such lovely prose.” – Bill McKibben
“This is a haunting and remarkable book – one that I will read again and again. Gentle and wise, with a precise understanding of the author’s place in this precarious universe, Listening to Stone deserves a wide audience.” Jay Parini, author of Robert Frost: A Life
“Listening to Stone: Hardy Structures, Perilous Follies, and Other Tangles With Nature,” by Dan Snow (Artisan, 2008), is a brilliant work by an ingenious artist and stone mason. Your jaw will drop a little more with each turn of the page. It’s reminiscent of artwork by M.C. Escher, who drew impossible structures, except Escher’s drawings were one-dimensional. Snow’s works are three-dimensional, real-world objects that are constructed of stone without mortar that actually exists in the landscape. Remarkably, most are working fabrications. His latest book is part philosophy and part geology. He promotes a sense of community: When loose stone is collected and arranged, conversations take place. We hear people pondering their place on earth. With photography by Peter Mauss, this 144-page hardcover will inspire you to fashion your own stone structures.
– Joel M. Lerner, Washington Post