NOMMA Says Goodbye to Industry Legend
His continuing need to learn meant that he scoured antique books on metalworking and sketched designs – reworking them until they met his standards. Although he never met his goal of “perfection” on any project, his skill and creativity were recognized by numerous awards, including many Top Job awards from NOMMA and the Mitch Heitler Award. His wife, Marion (1930-2017), was also a frequent award winner, and responsible for the design and creation of a metal-sculptured cake to celebrate NOMMA’s 25th anniversary cake.
Throughout his successful career, Valerius chose to give back to the industry to encourage creativity and professionalism. Demonstrations at conferences and meetings around the world, service as a NOMMA board member, sponsorship of an apprentice school through his business, and willingness to offer advice to industry members who asked for his help were a few of the ways that he supported other metalsmiths.
This “guru of artistic metalsmithing” will be missed.