Pete Mattila is an American-born blacksmith, artist and sculptor known for his work in forged steel. Born in Bessemer, Michigan in the United States, Mattila lives and works in Hobart, Tasmania. In 2018, he smelted steel in Tasmania in the first documented production of pure Tasmanian steel in the island State.
Trained as a welder and industrial blacksmith, Mattila's work "celebrates complex histories, in art, craft and design as well as in industrial expression" and "the expression of an ethical life through the immediate relationship between hand and mind."
With a master's degree in Fine Arts from the University of Tasmania, he has exhibited internationally since 2011. His work is included in public and private collections in the U.S. and Australia including Mona and Design Tasmania.
The Quickening was exhibited as a part of Catalysis for Mona Foma at Design Tasmania in 2019.
Catalysis explores the possibilities of combining fossicked elements from the Tasmanian environment, alongside post-industrial materials. Magnetite from Savage River and charcoal from the burnt Weld Valley forest are reimagined, with industrial steel into sculptural form. Developed in a handmade furnace fuelled only by charcoal from the state logged Weld Valley forest (forestry clear-fells then burn the remaining ecology), it is slowly charged with magnetite from the Savage river and fanned to generate an incubation of 1,700 degrees creating what is called a ‘Bloom’ of steel.
Dimensions: 1530mm Height | 630mm Width | 245mm Depth.
This item is hand made in Tasmania and available for custom order.
Photo credit: Emily Dimonzantos, 2020.