Revealing the Spirit of Stone: An Interview with Steve Ray Maes

~Digital composite by Felicia~

Steve Ray Maes is a native Santa Fean. He was born in the oldest capital city in the late 60s. Maes is a well-rounded, multi-media artist, but he has focused his creative energy on sculpting stone. His sculptures accentuate his love of nature, his love of wings, and his appreciation of culture. He hand selects each stone knowing that he will be moved to create an intricate piece once the stone speaks to him.

~Digital composite by Felicia~

Maes draws inspiration from his Aztec ancestors on his paternal line, while nurturing some of the artistic qualities he learned from his maternal grandfather. He started working with clay when he was just 5 years old, molding small animal figures. He also painted and sketched as a child. By the age of 13, Maes started sculpting stone. He spent countless hours watching the art students of the Santa Fe Indian School sculpt and became captivated by stone work.

Following his heart, Maes became a sculptor apprentice. He has worked for several famous artists such as Presley LaFountain, Bruce LaFountain, Doug Hyde, Van Penquin, and George Rivera, Governor of Pojoaque Pueblo. Along the way, Maes learned skill and technique from these master sculptors. From this time, he knew he was meant to be an artist, but his devotion to the arts was confirmed on a 2010 trip to Italy and Paris. Maes came away from that trip feeling connected, inspired and invigorated by the Baroque style of sculptures of Bernini, and works of the Renaissance period greats like Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci.

~Digital composite by Felicia~

To date, the most sophisticated piece Maes has sculpted is titled ”Purple Butterfly.” The marble butterfly was created with stone inlay designs on the wings, which required extreme precision and attention to detail. Maes is proud of the level of skill necessary to sculpt such an elaborate piece. With the right music, a sturdy table and good lighting, he becomes lost in the creative process. A combination of skill, setting, and inspiration gave wings to this butterfly with perfectly carved facial features bringing her to life.

~Digital composite by Felicia~

The work of Steve Ray Maes has been featured in galleries in Sedona and Florida. His works are often custom works for private individuals. In his spare time, Maes enjoys teaching others how to sculpt and has delivered instruction to Gene Hackman. His work is unique and he takes pride in being a local artist. From childhood into adulthood, this native New Mexican has delivered energy to clay and stone with his mind and hands.

Explore posts in the same categories: Art, Artists, Creativity, Digital Composites, Hidden History, Interviews, Men, New Mexico, Santa Fe, Worthy Reads, Writers, Writing

One Comment on “Revealing the Spirit of Stone: An Interview with Steve Ray Maes”

  1. andy1076 Says:

    His art is just incredible, The details are so lifelike. I’m so envious, of people who learn at such an early age and continue the family traditions.

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