It is this unforgiving nature of the sculpting process that intensifies my passion for sculpture."- Bradford Rhea
Born in Denver, Colorado in 1954, Bradford
has experienced a lifelong affinity for the arts.
He studied Fine Arts at the University of Colorado and also spent three months learning from the masters in Florence, Italy.
Bradford also obtained a degree in Nuclear Medicine and eventually moved to Sterling, Colorado to work at Logan County Hospital and to pursue his interest in sculpture.
For over a decade, Bradford
carved trees in and around the Sterling area.
is pursuing his
original dream of sculpting marble.
recently completed a 21,000-lb. marble sculpture of seven angels, and is presently working on a 30,000-lb. block of Colorado Yule marble.
"Within the stone is a message far greater than the emerging forms may outwardly reveal.
Every strike of the chisel should be delivered with the intent of finding and expressing our very purpose on earth."- Bradford Rhea
But behind the fame, Bradford Rhea
continues to live and work nearby as a modest and shy artist whose endeavors have only made him more retiring.
About half a block down Merino's main street, the long-haired, blue-eyed Rhea
quietly works in his
Not comfortable in big groups, Rhea
almost seems to seek refuge from the rest of world when he
works on his
"…It's my way of communicating with the world."
Admitting to his
half-jokingly calls himself an "introvert."
Sterling's serene and quiet climate, he
adds, limits distractions and allows for seclusion from the fast-paced, busy life, letting him "find a focus."
journey to town was one of many twists and turns.
He initially pursued his love of art … and studied fine arts at the University of Northern Colorado.
... after traveling to Florence, Italy, to study the marble sculptures of his
idol Michelangelo, whose books still dominate his
"I was so overwhelmed by such great art that I didn't create anything for two years," he
The Bear Valley, Colo. native switched gears and instead earned a degree in nuclear medicine in 1979, and moved to Sterling to work as a diagnostic technician at the hospital.
artistic craving quickly re-surfaced, and he
job to sculpt.
success to the …loyal fans and to God.
"But I give the most credit to the good Lord.
I never would have imagined any of this happening.
I think it's incredible, but I'm also humbled by it."
"It (speaking about the staff Bradford Rhea was commissioned to create by then United States President Bill Clinton for a gift to give to Pope John Paul II) was awe-inspiring and something that had never been done before," remembers Chamber of Commerce executive director Tim Edgar.
"We're very honored to have Mr. Rhea
in (the area)."
While biblical scriptures drive his
sometimes plays background music to boost his
creative energy - ranging from rock to Bach's classical tunes.
"Whatever fits," he
… knowing you can affect people's lives, hopefully in a positive way, is the one thing that keeps you going."
Stop by Bradford Rhea's
other pages to view more of his
P.O. Box 74
Merino, Colorado 80741