Most folks would see a collection of tins, silverware, and metal Christmas ornaments lying in piles and consider it presorting for recycling. I see small birds with attitudes. Over the next few hours, after drilling, bending metal, using tin snips, and a metal file, the birds emerge and are waiting to greet their new owners.
Betsy Soifer was born and raised as an artist’s daughter in suburban eastern Pennsylvania. Encouraged by my father and his artist friends, I dabbled in drawing, pen and ink, painting, and sculpting using both clay and wood as my media. With the financial help of my parents, I completed a traditional 4 year college majoring in science. Additional degrees included a Ph.D. in Pharmacology and a M.D After working 25+ years as either an anesthesiologist and/or intensive care physician, sculpting resurfaced in 2009 in the form of animal Christmas gifts to friends and family.
Having completed some introductory welding classes, my lack of a supporting metal shop did not slow my need to create. Using nuts/bolts/metal screws, a hack saw, an angle grinder, a drill press, and a drill, I enjoy the challenge of converting recycled scraps of metal [including kitchenware, plumbing parts, construction hangers, hub cabs, knobs] into whimsical creatures for folks to smile at and enjoy. I make free-standing creatures that mimic nature. Flying animals have always fascinated me and my constructions including pigs, birds and insects. Wall-hanging pieces are either recycled metal taxidermy take-offs or modified mailboxes or clocks.
I have been fortunate to participate in the following shows and galleries: Cracked Pots Garden Show; Clark County Recycled Arts Festival in Vancouver; Portland neighborhood fairs including the Belmont Street Fair, the Main Street Craft and Art Fair, and HollyWOOF; daVinci Middle School Art Fair; Buckmann School Art Fair; Portland Open Studios; Currents Gallery in McMinnville Recycled Art show; The Green Show at the Cannon Beach Art Association; Next Step Precycling Art Show in Eugene, Oregon; ReArt in Billingham, Washington; The Art of Sculpture and the Open Show at the Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts; Gresham Art Committee Shows; Check Em Off Recycled Art Sale in Vancouver, Washington; Sherwood Altered Arts Festival; Oregon City Festival of the Arts; Gresham Festival of the Arts; The Red Raven Gallery in Salem, Oregon; Yamhill Lavender Festival; Monkeyshines Studio and Gallery in Goldendale, Washington; Six Days Art [now Alberta Street Gallery] in Portland, Oregon; Wilsonville Art Festival; Grizzly Ridge Upcycle in Sisters, Oregon; Billy Goat Vintage in Portland; Art in the Garden in Penisula Park;ans soon the Clark County Open Studios.
Brief Bio Betsy Soifer is a retired physician who now sculpts recycled mixed metals into whimsical creatures for the home and garden.