My name is Shelly Durica-Laiche of Indio Metal Arts. I’m a welder that designs and builds both decorative and functional steel objects. I have a double major from Portland State University in Sculpture and Graphic Design. I fell in love with steel when I took my first welding class there in 2003. After graduation I went to the Oregon Zoo where I sculpted naturalistic elements and animal habitats, then to Laika where I built tiny landscape bits for the stop motion film ParaNorman.
I created Indio Metal Arts in 2012. I design and build steel free standing sculpture, furniture, architectural elements and trellises. Now I work full time in the studio, preparing for art festivals, gallery shows and commissions. You may have seen me at the Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts, Salem Art Fair & Festival, Association of Landscape Designers Tour, Portland Open Studios, Gathering of the Guilds, Local 14, or Cracked Pots.
I use as much salvaged material as possible in my work. I collect it from steel yards around the state, from the side of the road, through my travels or by donation. Scrap metal has an embedded history and character that folds into each design. I’m inspired by the unique shapes of these found treasures. Sometimes I know right away what I want to build but sometimes it takes years. I’m driven by the design challenge of transforming known objects into ones with a new voice. The assemblages become one of a kind sculptures that can’t be duplicated. I seek for the viewer to be surprised by how a material is used in an unconventional way, far removed from its past life. It’s magic to me.
- Milwaukie City Hall Sculpture Garden, Crescent, 2019-2021
- Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts, Gathering of the Guilds, Salem Art Show & Festival, Portland Open Studios, Cracked Pots, Local 14, Portland Home & Garden, Hortlandia and Celebration of Creativity. See ‘show’ tab for full listing.
- Newport Visual Arts Center, “Variety of Visions”, PNWS group, Newport, Oregon, October 2017.
- The C.A.V.E., “Alchemy in 3D”, PNWS group, Vancouver, Washington, April 2018.
- Lake Oswego Reads, Lakewood Center for the Arts then traveling state wide, February – November 2019
- Multnomah Art Center, “Unmatched Pairs”, PNWS group, Portland, Oregon, September 2019.
- ArtReach Gallery, “Making Space”, PNWS & NWSSA, October 12th-15th, 2019.
- Guardino Gallery, Chayo Wilson collaborations, “When Metal Meets Clay”, October 3st-November 24th, 2019.
- Alberta Street Gallery, Autumn Invitational, October 1st- 25th, 2020
- Sherwood Center for the Arts, Metal Art Exhibit, June 2nd – August 2nd, 2021
- Association of Landscape Designers Tour 2016 & 2019
- Portland Modern Home 2019
- Pacific Northwest Sculptors Guild: Board Member – Social Media, former Treasurer, former Secretary
- Creative Metal Arts Guild: former Spring Show Steering Committee – former Treasurer
- Artistic Portland Gallery: Artist Co-op member, Board Member, former VP, Gallery Design lead
- Metalsmith Magazine, Portland Oregon: A River Runs Through it, by Judy Wagonfeld, Page 16, Volume 38 No. 2. This article is an expose on the Portland metal art scene. I was among those interviewed and quoted.
- The Bee, Open Studios Tour, page 15, February 2019, Vol 113, Issue 6
- Portland Tribune, Sculpture Livens Up Milwaukie City Hall, by Ellen Spitaleri, page A17, November 12, 2019.
- Sherwood Gazette, ‘Metal artists to be featured at gallery’, by Leah Burgess, page 9, June 2021, Vol. 26, Issue 6.