Thom Wheeler is a Texas native who became one of Houston's foremost contemporary sculptors in the 1970's/80's, creating many large commissions for corporations and architects, commercial and public spaces such as hotel and bank lobbies. He worked in grand scale ranging from 54 feet for bas relief works to 60 feet tall three dimensional pieces. Major works were executed for Banco di Roma, Rome, Italy; The Grand Hotel, Houston; and Ole Miss University, Oxford, Mississippi among many others. Private collectors include Dr. Jonas Salk and country music star Randy Travis.
He's had one-man shows in several cities including San Francisco, Palm Springs, and New Orleans, and been feature or cover artist in several publications including "Southwest Art", "New Mexico Magazine", and "The Houston Chronicle".
His materials are highly polished and textured metals such as brass, copper, and aluminum plate set with ivory, wood, cast glass, stag horn, and stone such as turquoise, malachite and jasper. His tools include the band saw, lathe, drill press, shears, kilns, welding machines, buffers, and sanders.
Thom moved to Taos in 1985 where he began concentrating on smaller pieces with a feeling for the icons of the West and Southwest - gypsy women faces, crosses, bucking broncos, howling coyotes, cow skulls, and the saguaro cacti. As he said, "You could call this my interpretation of Indian jewelry." He actually calls these works "wall jewelry".
Affectionate yet reverent to the Western theme, Thom often titles his work after country western songs as "Don't Fence Me In" and "Cow Cow Boogie". His work ranges from $300 for a 4" x 12" Sacred Heart Icon to several thousands. The humidors are $2,400. The "Thunderbird Icon" which is 48" x 36" is $4,800.
In 1992 Thom built his two-story adobe castle, foundry, and gallery at 939 Kit Carson Road where he lives and works today. When asked what the gallery hours are he said "pretty much 9-5, seven days a week, except when I'm not here". You might want to give him a call before going (575) 758-8870