Clayton Swartz Biography

Complex layering of bio-morphic shapes, interweaving design, translucent and saturated colors only begins to describe my unique metal sculptures. Looking into any one of my sculptures will take you deep into a maze of parts, design, formal unities, and holistic composition that will leave you contemplating the sculptures design and meaning. I use an array of techniques and processes employing MIG and TIG welding, plasma cutting, and grinding. Once fabrication is complete, the color process begins. Using an array of brushes, airbrushes, and other paint moving tools, I paint my sculptures with vibrant colors. These special techniques are used to create essential effects in the work that treat each shape as its own abstract painting while working in conjunction with the whole sculpture. Finally, I apply several coats of an automotive finish for long lasting and lustrous color and shine that will last for years to come. I specialize in creating aluminum sculptures that are able to withstand the elements and can be displayed indoors or outdoors.

My works blend modern abstract sensibilities with formal subjects. My main focus includes sea life sculptures which stems from my fascination with the ocean and a love of scuba diving, spear fishing, and boating. I create heart sculptures to symbolize a strong connection to God, family and a love for life. Lastly, my modern abstract sculptures illustrate my passion for vibrant color and beautiful form. I am interested in the physical act that goes into creating my works. I describe my works as a performance or dance with the material...a chance to change something raw into something beautiful. My vision is to create inspirational sculptures that invoke feelings of joy, love, hope, peace, and beauty. I want to enhance communities by creating sculptures that are visually stimulating and engages the community to interact with my sculptures by discovering their beauty and meaning.

Originally from Miami, as a young boy, I watched my father weld and braze metals into unique sculptures, sparking my own passion for welding and creating. During my years at Dixie Hollins High school I discovered my passion for creating art. I took  adult education classes and learned how to weld. My first sculptures were welded on my apartment balcony. I continued my studies at Saint Petersburg Junior College then the University of South Florida where I graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and Sculpture in 1999. During my college years I also began a music career. I enjoyed the electronic music scene and started out as a music DJ then starting my own record label Funklab records which lasted about 10 years. During those music years I also graduated college and went on to teach high school art for Pinellas County schools for 5 years. In 2005, when my wife and I decided to start our family, I changed my focus from music to creating and selling my art.

I began attending fine art festivals around the state. I soon moved to my current home and built a studio in Pinellas Park, FL. It was not long before I began creating large scale sculptures for private collectors, corporations, businesses, and municipalities. Now 16 years later, I have extensive experience creating public art and commissions. I collaborate with engineers, designers and other professionals to design, fabricate, and install sculptures. I am a two-time recipient of the Art in State Buildings program at Florida Gulf Coast University. All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg has purchased and commissioned an extensive collection of my sculptures. Other notable public art include the City of Bonita Springs, City of Deerfield Beach, City of Safety Harbor, City of Belleair, Crabby's Dockside,  Victoria Place, City of Bushnell, Pinellas Sun Coast Transit Authority PSTA, Epic Gateway Apartments, Sunset Vistas, Marriott Ocean Pointe Hotel, Barrymore Hotel, 400 Beach Restaurant, Salt Rock Grill, The City of Pinellas Park, Homewood Suites, Pinnacle Housing Group, Harrison School for the Arts, City of Dunedin as well as many public and private collections in the Tampa Bay and around the country. I have also exhibited my sculptures in art programs and competitions around the state. Some of these include, Clearwater Sculpture 360, City of Tamarac, Art Loud Project Tampa.

In 2015, I opened my own art gallery in Pinellas Park named Swartz Art Gallery. The gallery features a variety of works, from metal sculptures to mixed media paintings to wood carvings and furniture. Outside Swartz Gallery is a collection of my larger scale sculptures. These pieces are displayed for the public to enjoy and are available for purchase. Swartz Art Gallery hosts annual special events and features various local artists as well. The gallery also allows me to meet with collectors, art enthusiasts, and potential clients about purchasing and commissioning work. A visit to Swartz Gallery will allow you to see my current available work and see some of the best public art in the Tampa Bay area. I spend most of my days in my studio. If you are planning a visit to the gallery then call ahead to make an appointment for me to meet you there. I also continue to showcase my work in a few art festivals around the state in the months of January-April.

When not busy making art, I also enjoy spending time with my wife Rachael and our five children. I enjoy boating, fishing, diving and spearfishing, cycling, and attending baseball and other sporting activities with my family. I am a proud supporter of various local charities and schools throughout the Tampa Bay area. I love working and sharing my passion for creating art with others.

Swartz Art

5609 Park Blvd,

Pinellas Park, FL 33781

Phone. 727-421-0553