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Local metalsmith takes inspiration from 1950s craftsman

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WEBSTER GROVES, MO (KTVI) – Slowly and meticulously, craftsman Roger Rimel creates a one-of-its-kind piece of jewelry.

“This is most of my workspace,” Rimel said. “Almost everything I do is right here.”

With all the right tools within inches of his reach, Rimel will spend days crafting a piece of jewelry for this weekend’s St. Louis Art Fair in downtown Clayton.

Rimel, a metalsmith, said he’s following in the footsteps of St. Louisan Dwight Dillon.

“I saw Dwight Dillon’s work, he’s in the permanent exhibitions collection at the St. Louis Art Museum,” Rimel said. “He has a couple of pieces there.”

Rimel will be one of the 181 artists showcasing creations Friday, September 9 through Sunday, September 11 in downtown Clayton.

The inspiration for an artist can come from a number of sources. But for Rimel, the old workbench at his Webster Groves art studio serves as inspiration and an insight into the past. It belonged to his idol, Dwight Dillon.

“There are people that do know Dwight Dillon,” Rimel said. “They know the name and it`s a nice reference. It’s a St. Louis connection and it’s nice to know that this tool, which is what this bench is, is being used again.”

So this old workbench, discovered at an estate sale, and once owned and used by Dwight Dillon, is continuing to help Roger Rimel create new works in the 21st century.