Coast Galleries

Loet Vanderveen Biography

Loet Vanderveen is acknowledged as the most prominent wildlife sculptor in the world today. His sculpture is exhibited in many permanent Museums, he has created numerous Commissions and has been collected by many prestigious Collectors.

Born in Holland near the Rotterdam Zoo, as a boy Loet grew up with all the animals, befriending and caring for them, always playing with them and enjoying their company.

When Loet was eighteen World War II erupted and the zoo was bombed, dislodging the animals who wandered the streets in fear and confusion. He helped many of the animals to safety. Loet fled from the occupation and joined the Royal Air Force.

After many years as a fashion designer in Zurich, London and New York, he discovered ceramics and learned the art of glazing from Fong Chow, who later became the curator of the Far Eastern Department of the Metropolitan Museum.

When Loet migrated to the west he discovered Big Sur on California's spectacular central coast. He built a home and studio perched 1,500 feet high on a mountain top overlooking the Pacific Ocean where he observes the wild animal life surrounding him: fox, deer, wild boar, bobcat and mountain lion often come into view.

Loet began making ceramics for a living and soon was experimenting with bronze elements added to ceramic animals, which then evolved into creating cast bronze animal sculptures. Now Loet's work is also available in Baccarat Crystal that is made in France.

His sculptures have exquisite patinas of ebony, browns, burgundy, reds, jade greens, and silver grays-all carefully selected to enhance the sculptured forms.

Art critics have praised Vanderveen for capturing the essence of an animal by interpreting each animal's classic pose... a cheetah is stalking, a panther is circling, a camel getting ready to rise, while a gazelle is feeding and a lion is resting.

Loet's first gallery was Coast Gallery Big Sur, where he began exhibiting his sculpture in 1958. Coast Gallery continues to represent Loet's sculpture exclusively in central California in other gallery locations, Coast Gallery Pebble Beach and Coast Gallery Carmel. Coast Galleries has the largest collection of Vanderveen's sculpture in the world.