THE FORD

VILEM ZACH

BRONZE

ARTIST
BIOGRAPHY

Vilem Zach was born in 1946 in Prague, the Czech Republic. Classically trained in art, he left his homeland and moved to Canada in 1969 after the communist invasion. In North America, Vilem was able to transform his passion of art and the West into a full-time profession. 

In the late 1970’s, he began to sculpt pieces to be cast in bronze, a medium for which he is now internationally recognized. A lifelong ambition – to operate his own ranch – was realized in Alberta where he now sees and captures the allure of the West in its most candid form - sculpture.

In his sculptures he depicts unique, empathic characters, bringing both the dramatic and the simple moments to life. He manages to achieve both incredible realism and depth of feeling in his pieces through his strong, classical, fine detailing and his gift of capturing movement. His use of color is exceptional, the depth and character to his patina is unique.

To produce his bronze sculptures, Vilem uses the ‘Lost Wax’ Process an ancient technique dating back to 2500BC where the wax used was made from the honeybee. He firstly sculpts a clay model of the image that he wants to create in bronze. Once finalized, the model then goes to the foundry for casting where not one, but a series of both positive and negative molds are taken to make each piece of the edition.

In total, to make one piece, takes 125 very detailed, meticulous and complex steps with every mold and every model repeated from scratch. Once the entire edition has been cast the original clay model is destroyed so the image can never be recreated.
   
Vilem Zach has won the Charlie Russell Show at Great Falls, Montana three times - the only artist to ever win this prestigious award three times. Currently residing in Southern Alberta, Vilem has exhibited with the world famous Calgary Exhibition and Stampede for the last twenty years. In keeping with his Czech Zach family history, his crest emblem is used as a signature marking and can be found on all bronzes created by the artist.

Many of his life size statues and heroic size monuments can be seen throughout Canada and the US including the Canadian Embassy in Washington DC, the Calgary Airport, the Stampede and Banff Springs Hotel. His one and one third life size sculpture ‘the Olympic Torch Runners Monument’ was made to commemorate the 16th Winter Olympic Games held in Calgary in 1988.

Vilem is also recoginised for his paintings of the North American Indian and their culture. His work is held in prestigious public and private collections all over the world including Prince Andrew of England, the Governor of Oklahoma - Frank Keating, Ralph Lauren and the Premier of Alberta, Ralph Klein. 
I am grateful to have filled a lifelong ambition – to operate my own ranch. In Alberta I can live, see and capture the allure of the West. I seek to capture the moment and the person in a most candid form - sculpture.
Vilem Zach