New Sculpture “Fish Finder” from Aaron Ristau Studio

New Sculpture “Fish Finder” from Aaron Ristau Studio

I was inspired by stream and lake trout fishing as a youth. I grew up spending time each summer fishing the streams and ponds around Turkey creek and Treasure Falls between Pagosa Springs and the Wolf Creek ski area of Colorado. I imagined a device that could process information related to the angler’s age old question, “Which lure to use today?” The question stayed with me. Fish Finder originated in 2001. I decided about 2004 that the sculpture had a great start, but was not complete. I’ve enjoyed finishing it this winter. Materials used include a bird skull given to me by one of my fishing buddies. He found it in a sunny spot in the dry spring snow melt. I did not tie the specific flys used in the sculpture but the ones I did put in I have used successfully all over Colorado. Fly tying techniques have been fun to use in making sculpture over the years. The bell jar has local plant matter in it. Other materials include stainless, aluminum, phenolic, carbon fiber, and brass. The reclaimed components came from several devices including a vacuum tube insulator, a lab glass bell jar, a portion of an MRI vacuum tube cathode. And a Rotary switch contact wheel from a mechanical city/ municipality water volume counting meter. Reclaimed from the Big Bend area of Texas. The original rack mounted aluminum case with door is from a 1950’s airport remote control relay panel, reclaimed from the Big Bend, Texas area as well.

Please see the HD video to fully appreciate this kinetic sculpture. Fish Finder complements a small body of related works seen here; Atomic and Marfa Light Repeater.

Fish Finder page on

Additional build photos and video here

About Aaron