Geoff Smith (1940–2009) made sculpture non-stop for forty years after graduating from the University of Vermont with a Master of Arts degree in 1969. During that time, his work was exhibited, purchased, and commissioned for private collections, public exhibitions, major corporations and art institutions in more than fifteen states across the nation. Smith worked in a variety of media, including steel, stone, wood, fiberglass, clay and bronze. During his long career, he lived and had studios in Vermont, Philadelphia, Virginia, Maine, and Kentucky.
Smith preferred to produce large-scale sculpture. When asked why, he said: “It is not for the sake of size, but simply because of the way I perceive line resolving itself in space. My primary concern as an artist has always been freedom—freedom from the constraints of pre-conceived artistic ideals and the freedom to pursue one’s aesthetic vision to its conclusion. In that sense the creation of sculpture becomes a statement of personal freedom that goes well beyond the object one creates.”
Smith lived on the Maine coast in both Portland and Deer Isle for many years, and the sculptures he created here often reflected the influence of maritime forms and shapes that define that region.
Smith was commissioned to create a large-scale steel sculpture to commemorate the centennial anniversary of the Brooklyn Bridge. He was awarded three National Endowment for the Arts grants by the Vermont Council on the Arts for large-scaled public sculptures; and received an Individual Artist’s Fellowship Award for Sculpture from the Virginia Commission on the Arts.
From the time he began making sculpture, Smith exhibited his work in numerous one-person and group shows in galleries and museums across the eastern and southern United States: Boston and Cambridge, MA; Burlington, Ferrisburg, Manchester, Waitsfield, and Woodstock, VT; Hanover, NH; Farmville, Newport News, Portsmouth, and Richmond, VA; Washington, DC; Blue Hill, Deer Isle, Portland, and Pownal, ME; Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, PA; Louisville and Lexington, KY.
CORPORATE AND INSTITUTIONAL COLLECTIONS • IDDEX Laboratories, Westbrook, ME • Portland International Jetport, Portland, ME • Portland Museum of Art, Portland, ME • The Jackson Laboratory, Bar Harbor, ME • Federal Reserve Bank, Richmond VA • Markel Insurance Company, Richmond, VA • Philadelphia Electric Company (PECO), Philadelphia, PA • Rouse and Associates, Philadelphia, PA • The Terramics Property Company, Philadelphia, PA • The Champion International Corporation, Stamford, CT • Boston Institute of Arts, Boston, MA • Millhouse-Bundy Performing and Fine Arts Center, Waitsfield, VT • University of Vermont, Burlington, VT • Bennington College, Bennington, VT • Hospice of the Bluegrass, Lexington KY