Artist Statement

“Faces irresistibly compel our interest.”

Much of our communication with one another is nonverbal. And much of that nonverbal communication takes place in our faces.

Humans have built into our genes amazing capabilities of recognition and interpretation of the slightest variations in the form of faces and their expressions.

In my portrait sculpture work, my goal is to recreate the subtle shapes of the human face that we react to instinctively – shapes that convey many shades of state of mind. I strive to capture things that may not be consciously understood by the viewer or the artist, but we know them when we see them.

Using traditional sculpture techniques this task is extremely difficult or impossible because of the technical challenges of capturing and reproducing the extraordinary subtlety of form.

Over the past five years I have developed state-of-the-art digital techniques for 3D scanning, sculpting and fabricating portrait sculptures.

The emergence of digital portrait sculpture today can be compared to the emergence of portrait photography over one hundred years ago. Before photography, painted portraits were most often stylized, grandiose images of notable people. Traditional portrait sculpture is still much like that today. The invention of photography allowed, for the first time, the possibility of capturing snapshots – casual, spontaneous images of people, their expressions and activities. Similarly, digital portrait sculpture now allows, for the first time, the possibility of capturing a three dimensional snapshot of a person and all of those beautiful, minutely subtle human expressions.

Beyond making faithful representations of people, I am also using these new digital tools to create objects that explore how our increasingly digital world may be impacting us as individuals.

September 2014

Exhibitions

2017 – Paradox, Juror: Lawrence Argent, Spark Gallery, Denver, Colorado, August 18, 2017 – September 10, 2017.

2015 – Second Chance at Life Fine Arts Exhibition, American Transplant Foundation, Point Gallery, Denver, Colorado, April 2, 2015 – April 16, 2015.

2015 – MATERIALIZE: Sculpture Using Digital Fabrication, Juror: Tom Lauerman, Fountain Gallery, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana, January 13 – February 21.

2014 – MATERIALIZE: Sculpture Using Digital Fabrication, Juror: Tom Lauerman, Elaine and Robert Stein Galleries, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio, October 26 – December 7.

2014 – Open Wall Museum Fundraiser, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Boulder, Colorado, October 10.

Biography

W. Phillip Rogers lives and works in Boulder, Colorado, USA.

Phillip’s father was a successful graphic artist in New York City. During high school Phillip worked in his father’s business, attended the School of Visual Arts and studied sculpture. Phillip holds a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Washington, was a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Colorado, and was a principal research and development engineer with Oracle Corporation. In 2014, Phillip began devoting himself full time to art.