Each piece is crafted with respect and thoroughness based on a concept inspired by shapes and colors collected in its environment. His minimalist pieces emphasize matter using simple shapes by creating pieces with unusual and timeless appearance. Pierre-Yves stands out as an innovative and unconventional creator as much in his ideas as in his technique. He was recognized by his peers by winning several prizes as well as having been selected as a jury member.
Pierre-Yves Paquette says that he admires “the German style of really slick lines,” and enjoys creating simple, fluid pieces using challenging technical processes. With his winning ring, Möebius Strip, pushes the limits of mokume gane to depict a mathematical form in continuous bands of color.
How did you come up with the title for this piece?
It is inspired by Möbius strips. That was the first one I have done pretty much in the same movement and shape as the Möbius. I started by researching surface colors and the Möbius shape itself. Both surfaces come back on each other into infinity. I wanted to represent this using my style and techniques.
What or who was your inspiration?
Mostly I work with simple shapes and the various uses of metals, which led me to mokume gane in the first place. I love the simplicity of German styles. Combining that style with different colors and simple shapes is my goal. It’s challenging. Placing the material at the forefront is important to me, so I use simple geometric shapes.
What obstacles did you have to overcome in making this piece?
Going slowly, to not unbond the metals, or deform or distort the surfaces. Keeping the fluidity of the piece, too. I made a few brass blanks before I made this one.
What did you feel when you heard?
I was very excited. I have won a few contests. I made this piece for the Sculptural Objects Functional Art Fair in Chicago. I had finished the piece and decided to send it off at the last minute to Rio Grande. I am beginning to understand and appreciate the magnitude of the award and how well Rio Grande treats the winners. I have been told by many people that “I will be very impressed.”
Have you won other awards?
Niche Award in 2012. The Russian Doll design contest for MJSA. I won the medal design contest for the Prix du Québec. These medals given by the government of Québec in recognition of lifetime achievement in art and science.
Name fun facts about yourself.
All of my close friends are musicians, artists or creatives of all sorts. Being from a small town in Québec, the more metropolitan lifestyle in Montréal helped me to see things in a different way.
Read more about Pierre-Yves, his work and his experience as an artist on the Saul Bell Design Award website. Be sure to enjoy even more golden inspiration from additional and previous year’s winners and finalists there, too.