Born on a farm in rural Vermont, Winston Churchill has never been far from the creatures, domestic and wild, that have been his models and the central focus of his life-long artistic passion. And though he has continually found fresh ways to express that passion through new and challenging mediums, his focus has never changed. From boyhood drawing and painting of the birds and animals he loves, to whittling their likenesses in wood, Winston continued his evolution as an artist with the purchase of a set of professional carving tools. They were of fine German steel, bought with his own earnings.
He enhanced his skills in the U.S. Navy, carving delicate and varied designs of ship insignia bas-relief into mahogony plaques which were then cast in bronze.
Following his stint in the military, Winston Churchill began to establish himself as an engraver of world renown. He apprenticed himeself "at the feet" of Josef Fugger an Austrian Old World master at Abercrombie and Fitch. It was an extraordionary experience for young Winston, for Fugger was the unsurpassed engraver of his generation in the U.S. In time and with the master's blessing, Winston returned to Vermont a freelance artist imbued with the best of European techniques and centries old traditions.
In the years that followed he furthered his reputation as one of the most talented and skilled engravers with the embellishment of the world's finest firearms crafted in the U.S., England and Italy. Sculpted and engraved with delicate scroll work and the stricking wildlife scenes that have been his passion since youth, each piece became a work of living beauty beneath his hands.
Churchill has frequently employed a dramtic combination of styles for visual contrast. It is high art in miniature form, art the most discerning connoisseurs were quick to recognize and covet. Since the firearms he engraves become, in effect, private museam pieces, most often locked away from public view, it has been the mediums of photography and the printed page here and abroad that have become his galleries of exhibition. His work has been featured in many books and America's finest sporting magazines. Churchill's skills with a camera have been indispensable in the publication and display of his work.
But beauty is found in many forms, and it is not suprising that, having recieved internation recognition in one form, Churchill would want to move on and explore another.
The day came when infected by the enthusiasm of a client who is also a bronze sculptor, he actually began to model the clay. It was love at first touch. Churchill was impelled in a new direction with a force that has only grown stronger with each new work.
His sculptures have been embraced for their beauty and liveliness and their precision of execution, a characteristic that has always identified his work. For optimum results from the lost-wax process Churchill does the final chasing of the waxes and bronze castings himself. In the end, this painstaking involvement by the artist is rewarded by accurate representation of original detail and a high quality patina made possible by his extensive metal finishing patiently executed with the master engraver's eye and touch.
In an era when sculpture often tends toward the impressionistic, Churchill's work exemplifies the opposite end of the spectrum, more closely resembling the animalier bronzes of nineteeth century French masters Moigniez and Mêne.
Turned and viewed from every perspective and light source, each pieces offers
enormous visual and tactile pleasure. Though sculpture is an ancient form of
expression, one has only to watch the advancing daylight reveal the subtle
changes in this artist's bronzes to know the medium is alive and dynamic today
as is his vision and passion.