How do you keep all of those looming “what-if” anxieties at bay? For Rob Garrett—a veteran and sculptor—welding metal objects together helps quite a bit.


LISTEN: Double Scoop Podcast Episode 22—The Art + Mental Health Series with Rob Garrett

Garrett, who was born and raised in Reno, joined the Air Force straight out of high school in 1985, specializing in aircraft weapons systems. When the military offered to pay for college, he took a few art classes, thinking they’d be easy electives, but in his first semester he became hooked on the creative process. Garrett took seven years to earn a four-year Fine Arts degree from the University of Nevada, Reno. He then ran Garrett’s Picture Frames while serving in the Nevada Air National Guard. Garrett closed his business the day after Sept. 11, 2001 to work full time for the military, which put his art career on hold for around 20 years.

Rob Garrett installing his portion of the exhibition Im OK, I’m not OK at UNR last week. Photo: Kris Vagner

Now retired, Garrett makes sculptures as a form of therapy. He’s a board member for the David J Drakulich Art Foundation and believes strongly in the organization’s motto, “Art heals war wounds.”(The foundation’s director, Tina Drakulich, appears in this podcast episode, too.)

Garrett sells his work under his business name “Wreck Ignition” at the Nevada Marketplace in the Reno Town Mall.

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Rob Garrett is one of four artists in Double Scoop’s current exhibition, Im OK, I’m not OK at UNR’s Student Galleries South through Aug. 5.

This podcast was funded by a grant from Nevada Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities. 

Posted by Holly Hutchings