A native of New Mexico, Ryan Steffens had many opportunities to develop his passion for stone. Exploring high mountain ranges, desolate rocky deserts or abandoned mine shafts, Ryan always found something that caught his eye. He would collect any interesting stone, continually fascinated by the patterns, colors, and textures he had discovered. In 1994, Ryan developed a successful business of incorporating natural stone into residential and commercial outdoor spaces. His business became well known for creative stone concepts that instilled raw unique art into landscaping.
After he spent a significant amount of time working with landscapes, Ryan was further inspired and began working more exclusively fountains. During that time, Ryan designed and developed many of the tools that he used, and he still uses many of them to this day. He has since perfected his vision of transforming a simple stone into an object of wonder. The creation process of rare stone fountains and furniture comes about at his family ranch in rural New Mexico.
Ryan has been known for his passion and meticulous scrutiny of the raw materials that are used in his hand-crafted water sculptures. Whenever possible, Ryan will hand pick his pieces of stone to work with. He feels that it is better to search for the right piece, keeping it in a natural raw state and then bringing out the natural beauty that the stone contains. All sizes of stone contain unique characteristics, to then be crafted into a finished work of art. The types of stone used – such as Onyx and Quartz – all require individual technique to cut and polish. When we see these natural and unparalleled works, they leave with a memory that will not soon be forgotten.
Ryan uses many different types of stone including onyx from the Grand Canyon area; Desert Onyx, quartzite and sandstone from New Mexico; limestone and sandstone from Utah; and onyx from South America. Most of the stones used are from, but not limited to the Southwestern United States. Also used is petrified wood, sourced responsibly from Arizona and Indonesia.
“Living Art” is a term Ryan uses to describe his work. He feels that bringing together the elements stone, water, and light creates a sense of life. When these aspects are combined, it makes for a truly exquisite piece of art.