ALBANY — Glenn Dasher visited Albany Technical College on Wednesday to show off some of his sculptures and to talk about welding as an art form to Albany Tech’s welding students.
The artist, who has an exhibit at the Albany Museum of Art, showed the students several of his smaller pieces formed from scrap metal.
Dasher showed the students the crude welding marks inside of the pieces to expose how his pieces come from trial and error and not professional training.
“I’m exposing how really lame I am at welding, but as you know, the secret to being a really great welder is to be a really great grinder,” he said.
Dasher gave some insight into his background. He went to college to study biology but found that that was not where his heart was.
“That’s what you did when you did well in school back in the ’70s: They told you to become a scientist,” Dasher said to the welding students. He said he spent most of his time in garages and found that he loved welding. Once he took a drawing class that was required for his college degree, he realized what he really wanted to do with his life was art.
Dasher became a welding instructor and an artist. He practiced working with different materials and learned how they could be created into something new.
“People think artists just have talent, but what artists really do is solve problems,” he said on the process of learning how to manipulate metals in different ways.
He encouraged the students to gather as much knowledge as they can about welding from the college, joking that “Even if you don’t go into the career of welding, you can always fix your lawnmower whenever it breaks.”
Dasher creates pieces of art that tell a story. Many of his pieces have political or historical significance, such as his miniature statue of the Washington Monument. Dasher showed students pictures of a pyramid he built from a destroyed bridge and said he hopes to use the piece or a future piece as a monument for the Trail of Tears.
Dasher also uses Greek Mythology in his work. He showed the welding students a lightning bolt with a golden fist he had formed out of metal.
Many of the pieces Dasher showed the students are currently on display in his AMA exhibit.