Erik Christianson grew up in in Oahu in the Hawaiian Islands. It is there that he first developed an interest in sculpture. While still in high school, he received a scholarship to attend the Hawaiian Academy of Art and was accepted for membership in the Waimea Art Council. In 1979 he moved to San Antonio, Texas where he was honored with two scholarships to study sculpture at the McNay Art Institute and was enrolled as a member of the Artists Alliance. During his career he studied every aspect of creating and manufacturing bronze sculptures. While working in an art foundry for 10 years, he learned what few schools could teach, specializing in all aspects of the foundry process to insure maximum quality in his work.
Over the years he received many important commissions from prestigious organizations such as the United States Horse Cavalry, the Vaqueros Association, the First Cavalry Division, the United States Naval Academy, the United States Air Force Academy, and Brook Army Medical Center. The scope of these sculptures has ranged from bas-reliefs, portraits, and full-length figures, to 150% life-size figures. Other commissions include: the ‘Don & Linda Carter Community Spirit Award’ where the sculpture depicts a Dallas Mavericks point guard. The first recipient of the award was the 1996 Olympic Gold Medal sprinter Michael Johnson.
Erik has created several life-sizes of ‘Our Lady of Guadalupe’ and St. Juan Diego for the Mexican American Cultural Center in downtown San Antonio and parishes in Dallas, Austin, and Missouri. He sculpted a 10-foot monumental bronze of Col. Juan Seguin, for the city that bears his name, in Seguin, Texas. He also sculpted the Texas A&M Bonfire Memorial where he created the portraits of the twelve students who lost their lives in that tragedy, the life-size relief of ‘Our Lady of Flowers’ at San Fernando Cathedral, in honor of Archbishop Patrick Flores of San Antonio, a life-size of the prophet Elijah, along with a baptismal fountain of Mount Carmel for the ‘National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica’ in San Antonio, and a life-size figure of Saint Paul at ‘St. Paul the Apostle Chapel’ at Horseshoe Bay.
His work reflects a deep interest in creating historically accurate figures while breathing life into his work. Those who have seen his creations agree that he has succeeded on both accounts.Erik lives in the Texas hill country with his wife Elena, who is also a fine artist and teaches art for the NBISD, and his son Kai who hopes to design cars when he grows up. Erik looks forward to spending many years doing what he loves best, sculpting.