Stefan Duerst grew up in Germany where he completed an apprenticeship with distinction in metal design and fabrication/ blacksmithing in 1995. In 2000 he went on to the master school for metalwork where he also earned distinction. In between schooling Stefan worked as a journeyman under Herbert Elflein in Murnau, Herbert was able to realize just about anything he imagined in metal. Stefan found this infectious. The time spent in Herbert’s shop helped him discover and further develop his sculpture.
While working as an intern for Julia Mangold, Stefan found another defining influence. Julia’s work is defined by absolute minimalism. Stefan learned from her how much you can work on a piece and when you have to stop in order to avoid overloading it. A practice he still observes to this today. No matter how complex a piece may be, the emphasis is always on clear lines and harmonious proportions.
Stefan took the leap across the Atlantic to realize his childhood dream of coming to Canada, and in 2002 he landed in Kingston where he opened a studio and shop. Nine years later he moved to Godfrey where he finds inspiration in the wilderness, where he currently lives with his wife and two children.