GORD SMITH was born in Montreal on October 8, 1937. He studied Architecture and Engineering at Sir George Williams University, and went on to work with the architectural firm of Lawson Betts and Cash in Montreal from 1956 to 1958. In 1967, he was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts (RCA). He was Assistant Professor in the Department of Visual Arts of the University of Victoria from 1972 to 1975. In 1993–94, he assumed a teaching role as Visiting Professor in the Department of Art and History, McMaster University, Hamilton.

     Throughout his career he has thrived on commissions and collaborations with architects Webb Zefara Menkes, Arthur Erickson, Bregman Hamman, Leslie Rebanks, Gene Kinoshita and other prominent firms.

     Smith currently resides in Toronto where he has burst forth in recent years in a creative renewal that already sees him laying claim to a prominent place in the art-history annals of the present century and not only of the last. He is producing a body of incomparable work both in his traditional media—metals (bronze, welded steel)—and in a new medium of wooden dowels. His 38th commission SPIRIT WAVE (16 feet x 6 feet, wood dowel) completed in 2007, spurred the commissioning party, Atria, to immediately commission another wooden-dowel piece for a second building.

     His design philosophy is best summed up in a statement made to Canadian Art Magazine at the outset of his career: “Everything—materials, texture, size, design and statement in a work of art—welds together to a point where there exists only the work itself. It just happens. A work of art does not need interpretation. It does not matter who or what I am, it is the work that is important—it should be timeless and with a power of its own. If it speaks, it will be heard and what I say about it is not important.”

     He continues to create in this philosophy.

Gord Smith