I first met Steve Weis some years ago. Piercing blue eyes, in his overalls as if ever ready for work, and with an easy gait; he struck me as someone who’d searched deeply in himself to find meaning in his life – and come out the other side a better person for it and with something to say.
I knew he was a blacksmith, and he’d mentioned to me something about the sound pieces in his garden, but I didn’t think much more about him until late last year when driving through Kin Kin with my partner. Looking out the window to my left I noticed this amazing array of … well, things dotted across the lush green pasture. It was then I realised this was his place.
We pulled over into their drive, and Steve and his parter, Janka, came out to met us. We were invited inside and offered drinks – though apparently we weren’t the first visitors who’d stopped in that day out of curiosity. I asked Steve to tell me what the story was with his garden and next thing Steve was leading me around to all these large, and somewhat wonderful metal configurations with a violin bow in hand.
Before each piece he’d pause, look upon it with eyes of affection, then he’d play; a symphony of dulcet plinks and plonks, rusted whorls and eerie scratchy screams. It was alchemical. It was mysterious. Never serious, though slightly unsettling.
Next week I was back, microphone in hand and camera at the ready.
This blog is homage to my meetings with Steve, his work, his outlook on life, and the terrestrial – and extra terrestrial – world of the blacksmith.
This work was supported by the Sunshine Coast Regional Arts Development Fund:
The Regional Arts Development Fund is a Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and Sunshine Coast Council partnership to support local arts and culture.