Sculpting since 1976, Easton usually works intuitively, selecting materials for their inherent qualities and form and working guided by the dynamic interaction of his materials and tools. Self-taught, he carves stone ranging in size from four inches to four feet, and from 5 to 500 pounds.
A 1989 sculpture intensive in Carrara, Italy, furthered Easton’s expertise in marble and exposed him directly to cultures where the tradition of statuary lives vitally. Working alongside other international artists and artisans, he followed in the tradition of sculptors from Roman and Renaissance times, producing a substantial body of work from Carrara marbles.
Easton was born in 1945 in rural Pennsylvania. In 1968 he received a B.A. in Chemistry from La Salle College (now University) in Philadelphia, and in 1970 he received an M.A. in English Literature from the University of Oregon in Eugene.
"The above are the kinds of things that can be said and still not really say anything about who or what a person is. The following is an extended, personal statement that I hope is more informative.
"Born at the end of World War II, in rural eastern Pennsylvania where George Washington slept his way through the Revolutionary War (the signs say so), my first love (after the obvious nest of family) was the Nature of fields and woods and stream and their inhabitants. My second and third (in some order) were books and, unfortunately, TV, both of which, along with childhood illnesses, distracted me from a healthy sense of reality and supplanted it with romantic make-believe versions of how the world is.
"After a youth directed at an academic career, first in science and then in the humanities (I even was going to become a monk in a cloistered monastery at one point), I chose hands over head and “became” an “artist,” first as an avocation, but quickly as a profession, a career. Because I approached my career with romantic hopes, I have spent most of my sculpting years working at a variety of “day jobs” to provide for the necessities of life while I produced sculpture when I could. I’ve tried to avoid the type of jobs that would require commitments that would divert me from sculpting, but the work and the migration from job to job has been its own major distraction.
“I view my pieces as vital, formal compositions; the resulting unity may be completely non-objective or may be a recognizable abstraction, but what determines its success, to me, is a quality of ‘rightness’ that should shine forth: the piece should be able to stand by itself and be believable. My goal is to create an idiosyncratic image that will yet be acceptable to and responded positively to by someone examining the work.
"My sculpture is a thing unto itself; it is what I do, what I’m good at, what I conceive of as my work, my role in life. I sculpt; I am a sculptor. It is as a sculptor that I feel right, feel that I am fulfilling my role, my place in life.
"For most of the three dozen plus years that I have been sculpting, I have, with rare exception, attempted to produce objects of beauty and completeness. They have been abstract, non-objective, but, to me, beautiful. At this time in my life (and career), driven by dwindling energy and difficult economics, I have embraced an additional set of values, objects of interest. Previously I had striven to make my pieces as flawless, literally and figuratively, as possible, removing material or even breaking pieces to eliminate faults in the stone. I won’t say that I heartily embrace such distractions now, for I don’t, but necessity and interest impel me to allow a certain level of fault, of incompleteness, of lack of resolution, of strangeness, or irregularity. Some of these pieces are clearly great to me; some are open questions. I don’t feel tied to this current movement in my work, but I am exploring it with interest in the results.
"As I age, time presses more heavily on my mind (and body). I chafe at the restraints of reality, money and health and time that limit my range of work options, at the same time that I want to goof off and have a good time and watch nature do its things. Where I live the ravens, owls, crows, coyotes, wild turkeys, and cows are my neighbors. The deer slip in and out at night. The damn gophers make tunnels like Swiss cheese. The wind, trees, clouds, fog, and sun dance the dance of the cosmos. The Pacific Ocean, not too many miles away, is something that anchors me to this place: the water, rocks, and light, beaches with treasures of pebbles and wood, seals, hawks, and more. As humanly-produced and therefore “artificial” as my sculpture is, to me it fits into this picture of the wondrous nature in which we live."