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My work is about the complexities of life’s recurring trials and triumphs. At times there is a calling for a truce, a time to quietly view our personal history to find the sequences. It is not lost on me that the media I choose to work in, copper, has a malleable nature lending itself to endless manipulations and is porous enough to take a patina. Those qualities at the same time parallel my web of thoughts. Recycled or new, the flame of my oxy-acetylene torch can melt the metal into massive forms and with finesse I can add delicate components to the same piece. Balance learned over time has allowed me to explore and expand. Being an observer of natural and man-made patterns, I can see the interplay that happens. This fuels an endless supply of ideas to digest and contemplate as I venture into that silent space before committing my metal to a work of art. It is not a straightforward process by any means.


Rita grew up in Sandusky, OH, a small industrial town on the shores of Lake Erie. The geographic nature of her hometown was a resource of natural beauty, from the beaches to the tangled woods and farm fields. The high school she attended valued the arts and prized itself on a passionate faculty and state-of-the-art facilities.


It was here that Rita was introduced to jewelry, weaving, copper enameling and many other art forms. After she graduated, she continued her education under the guidance of a local silversmith and went on to make and sell her own fabricated jewelry. 


She moved from her hometown to Athens, OH, and learned the craft of wild weave basket weaving. This technique combined with her metalsmithing skills played a role in her metal sculpture work when she moved to Austin, TX in 1983. Rita’s line of figurative sterling silver jewelry inspired her to explore large scale sculptures. The drive to know more about sculpture led her to Daryl G. Colburn, a renowned non-ferrous metal sculptor. She worked as his understudy from​ ​1990 until 2003. Together they opened and managed galleries which promoted their works, as well as other local artists. With over 40 years of experience working in metal, she continues to make original sculptures and jewelry for corporate, as well as private collectors.


2019             Cloud Tree Gallery, Austin TX

2016-2009   Your Private Collection Gallery, Granbury, TX

2013             Austin International Airport Exhibition / Creative Side Jewelry Academy

2011             Artmatters Gallery, New Braunfels, TX

2007-2006   JHS Gallery, Taos, NM

2006-2004   The Crossings, Austin, TX

2006-2004   Beyond Tradition, Austin, TX

2002-1996   Laughing at the Sun Gallery, Austin, TX

1994-1992   Sunset Gallery and Studios, Austin, TX



2022     INTERNAL MOVEMENT 42"h x  62"w x 2"d TX Oncology Cancer Center Tyler, TX
 38"h x 42"w x 2"d

2016    BAT HAVEN 62" x 39"Hilton Homewood Suites, Austin

2011    LIVING WATERS CROSS 108”h x 72”w x3”d Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin

2008    ST LOUIS CROSS 48” x 41”w, St Louis Catholic Church, Georgetown

2008    EMBRACING THE JOURNEY 48”h x20”w x 10”d Contemporary Healthcare              Austin

2005    SOLI DEO GLORIA CROSS  89"h x 41"w x 5"d First Evangelical Church                  Austin

2003    MOTHER AND CHILD32"h x 20"w x 8"d Dell's Children's Hospital, Austin




2023-2022 Bayou City Art Festival, Houston TX

2023-2022 Wimberley Art Festival,Wimberley TX

2023 Fiesta Art Fair San Antonio TX

2023-1995 Armadillo Christmas Bazaar Austin TX

2021   Bayou City Art Festival, Houston, TX

2021   Woodlands Waterways Art Festival, The Woodlands, TX

2020-2019   Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival, Albuquerque, NM 

2019-2006   Armadillo Christmas Bazaar, Austin, TX

2019   Umlauf Sculpture Garden, Texas Society of Sculpture (TSOS),                       Coordinator/Exhibitor

2019   Rio Grande Arts and Crafts Festival: Balloon Fiesta, Albuquerque, NM

2019   Rockport Art Festival, "Best in Category", Rockport, TX

2019   SculptFest, City of Round Rock, TX

2019   Ruidoso Art Festival, "Best in Class", Ruidoso, NM 

2018   Las Artistas Art and Fine Craft Show, El Paso, TX

2017   Travis Heights Art Trail, Austin, TX

2017   Las Artistas Art and Fine Craft Show, El Paso, TX

2017   Deep Ellum Arts Festival Dallas TX

2017   Bayou City Arts Festival, Houston TX

2017-2015 Exhibition Ann Kitchen D5 Office, Austin City Hall

2016   People's Gallery at City Hall, Austin, TX

2016   Art City Austin, Austin, TX

2012   Laguna Gloria Holiday Show, Austin, TX

2006   Texas Metal Arts Show, Guerne, TX

2006   Loveland Sculpture Invitational, Loveland, CO

2006   Balloon Fiesta, Albuquerque, NM

2005   Texas Metal Arts Show, Guerne, TX

2005   Rockport Art Festival, Rockport, TX

2004   Rockport Art Festival, “Best In Media” Rockport, TX



2023-2006  Thornton Road Studio L, Austin, TX

2010-2006  Santa Fe Studio Santa Fe  NM

2002-1996  Laughing at the Sun Gallery, Austin, TX

2002-1997  Made in the Shade Studio, Austin, TX




2020-2012    The Creative Side Jewelry Academy, Austin, TX

2020-2018    Flite Acres Ranch Sculpture Workshops

2018             Argentium Certified Instructor (AIC)

2012-2005    Thornton Road Studios, Austin, TX

2008             Jewelry Fabrication - Workshop for Olverian School, Santa Fe, NM

2008             Laguna Gloria Summer Program  Jewelry/ Sculpture, Austin, TX

2002-1997   Jewelry  Fabrication - Made in the Shade Studio, Austin, TX

Rita Marie Ross Austin Artist
Rita Marie Ross sculpture

Photos courtesy of Brenda Ladd

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