Ray Leier, one of the most influential individuals in the woodturning/wood art world, passed away in Los Angeles, Calif., late Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015 from natural causes. He was 68 and a Vietnam veteran. Details on funeral services are pending.
Leier and the late Jan Peters were owners of delmano gallery in Los Angeles for 38 years. They built the business into the world's greatest wood art gallery and brought many of world's top wood artist to prominence.
Leier was a founding member of the American Association of Woodturners and provided initial funding for the organization to get off the group.
He and Peters helped move wood into the fine arts field by participating in the annual SOFA (Sculptured Objects Functional Art) exhibition in Chicago. The show featured many of the world's top galleries showing top craft artists who demanded high dollars for their work.
They also published several books about the woodturning field including "500 Bowls" which got an untold number of individuals into with woodturning field.
He was an in-demand panelist at forums and symposiums and a founding member with Peters of the Collectors of Wood Art in 1997.
Following Peters death in December, 2012, he closed the brick-and-mortar delmano gallery but kept the business going onine with numerous exhibitions. Leier has his detractors in the woodturning field due to some businesses practices. But his without his presence, woodturning/wood art would not enjoy the success it has in 2015.