The Artistic World of Paul Chase

Jan 22, 2024 at 11:35 am by RMGadmin

“The Prince” 8x13x20” - Tennessee Red Marble - in private collection
Red River Ride - 12x7x16” - Tennessee Red Marble - Turquoise stone inlay - $3000
“Cool Revelry” - 9x13x15” - Arizona Marble - $2000

The Music of the Stone Horses

Meet Paul Chase, who, with his wife, Mary, call the charming town of Galena, Illinois, their home. Paul has transformed his studio in Galena into a creative haven. Armed with a degree in Art and a master’s in communications, both earned at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, Paul’s academic journey laid the groundwork for his artistic adventures. With over thirty years of experience, he has passionately shared his knowledge, teaching art and graphic arts at both the high school and college levels. Paul recently retired from Jo Davies Carroll Area Vocational Center. His devotion to the arts is reflected not only in his creations but also in his extensive career as an educator.
Paul’s artistic journey has been an exploration of the profound connections between music and visual expression. Music, particularly the symphony of guitars, has been a driving force behind hundreds of paintings and sculptures he created. Many of these artworks find their residence in Nashville at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel, a testament to the enduring impact of music on his creative endeavors.


The influence of music doesn’t stop at guitars for Paul; the “music” of horses has also played a pivotal role in shaping his artistic vision. Despite having limited direct encounters with live horses, his experiences in Montana, where he kept horses for his children, and a transformative visit to a cattle and guest ranch kindled a deep connection with the essence of horses. The symphony of the horse, with its design, passion, movement, and beauty, captivated Paul, beckoning him to channel his creativity into the sculpting of stone.


From guitars to stone carvings, Paul’s artistic evolution took a significant turn during a visit to the Cochise Marble Co. Quarry in Tucson, Arizona. Here, he carved his first stone horse, “The Bronc,” a pivotal moment marking his transition from guitar art to horse sculpture. He later received a gift of Tennessee Red Marble from a fellow sculptor, which led to the creation of “The Prince,” a stunning manifestation of design, movement, and musicality embodied in the form of a horse.


Paul’s affinity for the red cedar marble from the Tennessee Marble Co. in Friendsville became a defining element in his work. The stones he acquired from various locations across the country, including Colorado, Arizona, Vermont, and Tennessee, spoke to him uniquely. Guided by the distinctive voice of each stone, Paul transformed blocks and boulders into exquisite “Stone Horses” using traditional sculpting tools like chisels, hammers, mallets, rasps, and files, alongside modern power tools.


Describing his process, Paul emphasized his love for “releasing” the horse from the rough stone, sometimes leaving the organic textures intact to enhance the sense of motion and music. Other times, he ventured into abstraction, transforming horse heads into intricate patterns and geometric shapes, playing with contrasts between polished surfaces and the raw texture of the stone.


The journey of Paul’s Stone Horses continued as they found a home in Dawn Ann Billings’ shop, Moo Country, in Leiper’s Fork. Here, they are cared for and cherished, an homage to the enduring beauty and resonance of Paul’s creations. For more insight into the artist Paul Chase, his captivating “Stone Horses,” and a broader view of his artistic repertoire, visit