Florida Artists Group

  Area VII Member

John Merchant — Sculptor

HIgh Desert

3.2 x 9.5 x 6.0

Red Dragon 

High Riser

17 x 8 x 6

John Merchant 
Poetry In Motion

Oh I

14 x 6.5 x 7
Jungle Symphony


10 x 12 x 6

John's Web Site

Contact Email Address

Member of Flag since:

FLAG Positions Served:

Artist Statement:

Nothing engages me as intensively as stone carving.
The rock instructs what must be done to sculpt it.  The dialog commences once the piece of stone is purchased and communication is established.
The creative process begins intuitively.  Preconceived notions often do not work out. An unanticipated fault in the stone will dictate a change of direction, forcing a departure from the original concept and a revision of past conversations between the sculptor and rock. Cool headed analysis must then take precedence.
Superseding all other thoughts is that natural features, never before seen by anyone, are now being exposed to public view.  The task of shaping the stone to the sculptor’s vision are both puny and crucial compared to the cataclysmic forces that created the rock in the first place.

John's Bio:

John Merchant has drawn and painted since childhood, formally studying art in a succession of classes, and five years at the College of Art in Sheffield, England. Merchant and his wife moved to Estero by way of New York and are permanent residents.

Since 2006, his creative efforts have centered on stone sculpture under the tutelage of the Canadian sculptor Frank DeLaroche, and are influenced by artists such as Naguchi and fellow Yorkshire artists, Dame Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore. Prior to working in stone, he worked in clay sculpture. Nonetheless, his métier is stone carving and he will engage in it for the rest of his life.

Merchant’s evolving abstract sculptural style combines curved surfaces with hard edges and variations in texture, in shapes that best display the natural features of each stone

He is a member of the Florida Artist Group and an active member of the Bonita Springs Center for the Arts, the Naples Art Society, the Alliance for the Arts, the Arts Council of Southwest Florida and the Southwest Florida Craft Guild. He takes full advantage of their studio facilities. His art is regularly featured at the Co-op Gallery at Coconut Point.

Merchant’s art can be found in numerous private collections in the United States. Among his recent distinctions are the following:

Exhibitions and Awards:

“Best of Show,” Center for the Arts, Bonita Springs Summer Exhibition, June 2011
“Second Place” Center for the Arts, Bonita Springs Members Only Show, February  2012
“Honorable Mention” Art Council of SW Florida, Spring Show 2012
“Second Place” Center for the Arts, Bonita Springs, “Show Us Your Abs” 2012
“First Place” SW Florida Fine Craft Guild, “Great Books”, Sydney and Berne Davis Center 2012 
“First Place 3D” Art Council of SW Florida, “Winner’s Circle Biennial 2012/2013