Birth Place: CANADA, ST. PAUL
Biography: Mervin Joseph Bielish was born in St. Paul, Alberta. He took a painting course at the Banff School of Fine Arts (1962) before pursuing his B.Ed at the University of Alberta (1964) and BFA in Painting, Drawing, Sculpture, Ceramics, and Printmaking at the University of Manitoba (1968). He continued his fine arts training via gallery courses at the Walker Art Centre of Minneapolis (1968) and the Chicago Art Institute (1968), and received an MFA in Sculpture from the Washington State University (1974).
Bielish taught art for the Calgary Board of Education (1964 – 1971) and was later a Department Head of Fine Arts at Western Canada High School (1972 – 1976), a teaching assistant in Printmaking at the University of Manitoba (1966 – 1967), a cooperating teacher and guest lecturer for the University of Calgary (1968 – 1976), a consultant for a private art school on Lopez Island, Washington (1973 – 1976), and a fine arts consultant for the Ministry of Education of the Government of Alberta (1977 - ).
Working primarily as a sculptor of bronze, marble, stone, and wood, Bielish describes his art as “organic in concept—sometimes frankly representational,” arising from his “old-fashioned” appreciation of “the textures and colours of such traditional materials as wood and marble, and cast bronze painstakingly finished and polished by hand.”
Bielish has participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions across Canada and the United States. His work dwells in public and private collections in Canada, the United States, England, Switzerland, France, and Australia.