THE SIGN ARTIST
Kurt appears to be changing a light bulb. In fact, he is working on a
mural on the side of Holland's Paint Store on Carrboro's Main Street in
North Carolina. The realistic painting is a mirror image of the store's
actual front.Kurt Moessner, a native of New Jersey, has been a sign artist
for over 20 years. He went to art school in NJ to further his artistic gift.
He has done air brushing, hand carving, gold leaf guilding, hand lettering,
and murals. You can see his work all over the United States AND NOW IN JAPAN!!!.
Kurt was interviewed by Tom Burlington of WHTM TV channel 27 news!!!!!He appeared on the "Made in PA" segment on 3/31/99 and 4/1/99. Some of the quotes on the segment include "The Man They Call The Sign Carver" and "His gallery is all around us."
March'99 he was in the Hershey Chronicle
New store to have artistic touch
Local artist Kurt Moessner has produced a carved wooden sign for the new Rite Aid store, one of a limited number used by the chain.
A Palmyra resident, Moessner, who also designed signs for dentist Richard Walters and St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church, said, "I put a tremendous amount of work into the sign."
He said the sign for the hershey store has "Rite Aid" carved in positive letters , while many of his previous signs use negatively carved letters. This sign, which is 16-feet long, will have about 20 pounds of paint applied when finished, according to Moessner.
Moessner completed two carved wood Rite Aid signs this winter, the other for the Pottstown store. He since has been contracted for more Rite Aid signs.
The sign for the Hershey store is ready, and he expects Rite Aid officials to place the sign in front of the new store in the near future.
Moessner is not the only artist involved in the project, as Rite Aid has another project in the works with artist Bruce Johnson.
Johnson is to paint murals on the front and rear of the building, in special areas incorporated into the architecture. One will show some of the things that make Hershey famous, and the other will include the things Milton Hershey brought to the town, according to Rite Aid spokesperson Allison Costello.
Aug '98 he was in the religious section of the Harrisburg Patriot News
Artistic Sign Erected at Church--A fine art sculptured sign for St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church made an appearance this month along West Chocolate Avenue in Hershey, PA. Kurt S. Moessner, a sign carver from Palmyra, spent 200 hours carving sculptures of St. Joan and of the Virgin Mary out of Honduras mahogany to place on the sign, which is a glued panel of wood. St. Joan faces Palmyra, PA while the Virgin Mary faces Harrisburg, PA. Eleven months ago, Moessner decided to donate the $6,500 sign to his church in exchange for payment of materials. Using woodcarver's tools and a Dremel electric tool, he was able to carve the little fingers and facial details in detail. "It's unbelievable haw much time it took to do a 20-inch statue,"he said. Each sculpture was finished with latex acrylic paint to blend colors on the faces before the paint dried--and oils would have faded in a year, he said. Accents we done in platinum and gold leaf.
July'98 he was again seen in the
CREATING-Palmyra sign maker Kurt Moessner recently
showed the finished half of the sign for St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church,
complete with a carving. In February, Moessner said he was planning to
carve another statue for the other side of the sign. In the background,is
an 8 1/2 foot tall ice cream cone made from styrofoam, the kind used in
airplane wings. The ice cream cone was made for Brickerville Family
Restaurant in Lititz.
Feb. '98 he was profiled in the Hershey
SIGN ARTIST TAKES ON THE TASK OF A SPECIAL
SIGN FOR ST. JOAN'S
Kurt Moessner of Palmyra, owner of The Sign
Carver, is sculpting a statue of St. Joan of Arc for a sign he is making
for Hershey's St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church. His greatest challenge
now is this sign for which he is donating his labor. The sign itself isn't
the challenge; it's the St. Joan of Arc sculpture he is carving by hand out
of sugar pine. "I'll have more time in that little statue than I will that
sign, both sides," Moessner said, explaining it will probably take him 60
hours of painting and carving. "I want to do a nice job."
has been making signs for 20 years, but his real passion is for fine art.
The walls of his home--the old Harnish farm house at the corner of Lingle
Avenue and Wheatstone Drive--are decorated with his own drawings and
paintings. One is a portrait of his 110 lb dog, a samoyed named Hercules.
"He lays there and looks up at it and recognizes himself," Moessner says.
While he loves drawing and painting, he realizes that making signs is the
best way to earn money. He makes them for anyone and even sells them
wholesale to other sign makers. "I do signs to make a living, and I like
them when they are done," he said.
Getting there is the hard part, from
the design to the hand carving when necessary to the gold lettering. He even
creates a scaled-down prototype. He was preparing to ship a small sign--
about two feet long--in his shop recently to a client, who eventually would
get a full-scale, eight foot long sign.
Oct.'97 he was on the front
page of the Lebanon Patriot-News!!
MAN ALWAYS SHOWS
POSITIVE SIGNS IN HIS DAILY WORK
"Palmyra businessman believes '
there are never enough sculptured signs'"
If Kurt Moessner had his way,
every sign would be an interesting one, and, if he had the time, a carved or
sculpted one."I started out making papersigns 25 years ago. You know like
'for rent',' for sale'.You don't see manypaper signs anymore," said Moessner
of Palmyra, whose business is known as"The Sign Carver." He's graduating
now to more weighty projects, such asa 220 lb 8 x 4 foot redwood sign for
Waynesburg College near Pittsburg."I just think there are never enough
sculptured signs. It is a positive energy," he said.....Moessner's signs can
be seen in at least 50 places around the area, including Tender Years which
has an old fashioned silhouette of children playing, to Rhoads Pharmacy
with a mortar & pestle inside the "O"of the name. His sign for the Camp
Hill Cafe includes a chef wearing a high white hat and one of Moessner's
wife's gold earrings, a dental sign features a white sculpted molar, and the
sign marking the Signal Hill development displays a Civil War officer
looking out with binoculars....His current project is a two sided sign for
St. Joan of Arc Church which will feature an applied carving of the Saint,
based on a wood carved Italian statue of St. Joan owned by the Hershey
church....For most of his signs he uses C&C 3D computerized routing
system..."My hands were getting bad from carpal tunnel syndrome"....Moessner
who describes himself as a fine artist who graduated from "the school of
HKU--Hard Knocks University...I've been drawing my entire life". Perhaps
it's in his genes, he said, showing off black and white pastel drawing
created by his great grand father in Paris.Moessner displays it next to his
own lifelike pastels of animals.
Sept.'97 he was praised in the
NEW EYE-CATCHING SIGN HERALDS OPENING OF GALLERY IN ANNVILLE, PA.
It's without question eye-catching, and has to be the most unusual sign on
Main Street, if not much of Route 422. Owner Bruce Johnson believes it's
downright breathtaking....Not an ordinary sign, it is a 3-dimensional
sculpture of a vise used for joining picture frames..."The reaction has
been,'Boy is that neat, that is fun, that is great," Johnson said. "People
sort of gasp--not only at the size of it, but the whole idea of it--the
3-D quality the sign has."Skip Hicks, who operates the neighboring Allen
Theatre, was "elated" with the sign, Johnson said....Johnson said he came
up with the idea, but it was Kurt Moessner of Palmyra, owner of the Sign
Carver, who translated the idea into the sculpture-sign. "He is the best
there is. He is artistic as well as a super craftsman", Johnson said.
Recently, he was profiled in Sign Builder Magazine.
Here are a few excerpts:
"Kurt, proprietor of
The Sign Carver, has become adept at mixing modern technology with age-old
techniques to produce some of the most beautiful signage in this part of
the country. A graduate of HKU (Hard Knocks University), Kurt has been
associated with the sign industry for over 25 years. Although proficient
in truck lettering, air brushing, and banners, he developed a love for
carved signs several years ago. Since then, he has striven for perfection
in sign carving. He's a perfectionist!. He is not satisfied unless the signs
pass a scrutiny of close inspection. Most (other) signs look good at a
distance, but refined signage will look good up close....
Running Casmate on the pentium, it is outputted to a
Rebel Router System by Vinyl Technologies. Combined with the hand carving
mastered by Kurt over the years, the company has been able to produce some
very nice signs. The signs are guilded with an artist's eye. Kurt tries to
add hand painted artwork into every sign when
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