Marvin and Michelle Shafer, co-owners of Q3 Art, create a variety of metalwork, including a large range of fascinating colorful mobiles. We spoke with Marvin about their business.
ABI: You were a goldsmith for 25 years. What inspired you to start working with aluminum?
MS: I stopped working with gold and started creating in aluminum for three reasons.
A. Gold is such a volatile metal, with its fluctuating prices, while aluminum is very stable.
B. Refining gold from ore is an ecological disaster, mostly through the use of cyanides, whereas aluminum is the most recycled and abundant metal found.
C. By working with gold you become a target for the criminal mind. No more thank you.
ABI: What items do you sell the most?
MS: We sell a lot of jewelry thanks to the beautiful designs and color stories prepared with love by my wife, Michelle Shafer.
ABI: Please tell us about your commission work.
MS: Commission work allows me to create within the framework of others imaginations and needs. It is a chance to offer the monumental as essentially a difference in perspective.
ABI: What is the largest mobile you have ever made?
MS: Thus far my largest commission is represented by the three “Cirque” mobiles which are staggered to fill a 50’ stairwell in Orlando, Florida at the Scott Partnership Architectural Firm.
ABI: Do you have any advice for other artists who are seeking commissions?
MS: Dream on – and yes, that can be taken two ways. Attitude. Good luck is forever just around the corner.