He’s the master of the grotesque and his bizarre creatures are both eerie and fascinating. Meet Dug Stanat, a sculptor based in the San Francisco Bay Area, who loves creatures, characters, monsters, and spirits. For him, each sculpture is a glimpse into an untold story that he leaves for his viewers to complete.
It was in the early 90s that Stanat took up sculpting. Over time, he evolved a mixed media sculpture style to create his fantastic sculptures. This involves making heavy use of glued cloth and epoxy sculpting compounds. It’s not surprising his creations were displayed in galleries in San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Sacramento.
It was in the late 90s that Stanat shifted his focus from sculpting to 3D computer graphics. He was picked up as a character technical director (digital puppet maker) at PDI/Dreamworks in 2001. His name is associated with hit movies, such as ‘How to Train Your Dragon 1&2’, ‘Shrek 2&3’, ‘Rise of the Guardians’, ‘Puss in Boots 2’, ‘Madagascar 1&2’ and ‘The Bee Movie’. He spent a good 12 years working for Dreamworks.
However, Stanat’s original love for sculpting pulled at his heartstrings and compelled him to immerse himself once again in creating his bizarre stuff. He found mixed media and ceramic much to his liking because of the range of possibilities and the opportunities it afforded for experimentation.
Stanat creates his mixed media pieces on a plywood base, on which he erects a wire armature of the subject he wishes to sculpt. He uses epoxy putty to create his sculpture and finishes it with a cloth and other porous materials, saturated with acrylic. He also uses wood, metal foil, sheet metal, paper, sand, and rocks to create his sculptures.
Stanat switched exclusively to ceramics in 2013, since this water-based clay is fun to work with. Ceramic’s unique texture and long life were what appealed to him immensely. He usually creates his ceramic pieces in an electric kiln. To color the pieces, he uses traditional kiln treatments melted onto the clay at 2100 degrees Fahrenheit.
Stanat enjoys a fan following of over 40,000 fans on Instagram.