As a young man in November of 1980, Doug Adams started working for a large steel mill. He quickly became entranced by the process of taking recycled scrap metal from its simple form and making a new useable product. From the 65 ton electric arc furnaces spewing out molten steel, to the continuous caster cutting steel weighing 1.5 tons into 25’ lengths, to the final result of dozens of marketable steel shapes, Doug fell in love with steel. The work was hot, dirty and often times dangerous to perform. Fast forward 30 years, and Doug Adams’ experiences in the steel industry have come to inform all of his one-of-a-kind sculptural bells.
Using many of the same techniques and processes with which he became familiar in the steel mill, Doug masterfully combines found objects, up-cycled and reclaimed steel parts, priceless antiques, and glass elements, to create sculptures of astounding visual and aural beauty. Items that might end up in junkyards or farmers’ backyards are all potential art objects, waiting to be transformed!
In many Asian cultures the combination of stone and steel is considered ZEN, or good fortune. Buddhist temples have bells constructed of steel and stone, used for their meditative and purifying qualities. That is why many of Doug’s sculptures will often feature stones in the form of granite slabs, bound Red Rocks, and carefully selected boulders. Most of these are hand-selected from faraway places that Doug has visited, including the Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau, Alaska. When asked about the Eastern influence, Doug says, “I think we could all use more good fortune these days.”
In recent years, Doug began incorporating glass elements into his sculptures. These stunning gemstone-looking additions are created from reclaimed slag glass from old window factories and up-cycled glass bottles fused by Doug’s wife, Dianne Adams (an artist in her own right).
Designed to be displayed in the garden as well as the home, Doug encourages his collectors to experiment with the placement of their bells. Each collector’s unique environment will have an effect on the sound and resonance of their one-of-a-kind bell.