Your Wisconsin: Academy for the Art of Metal Shaping

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) - He has worked for celebrities including Jay Leno and ZZ Top, but Mark Gerisch is not an entertainer, he is an expert in metal.

"People have forgotten or not been taught the opportunity or luxury to work with their hands and actually build something" Gerisch says.

He is giving students from around the nation that chance, at the Academy for the Art of Metal Shaping in Green Bay. Gerisch has more than 35 years of experience as a Master Coachbuilder.

"I can design and build a vehicle from the front to the back. It is not just about building a piece of a car, it is about building the entire car" he explains of the trade.

Gerisch wanted to give back to the craft saying "About 4 years ago I started the AAMS. It has gone from having one or two students a week, to a two year program".

Reviving the mentor apprentice model to preserve the heritage of this unique craft. "They go through the whole process of Coachbuilding. How the frame and the upper structure mate to each other".

His expert status is evident with a look at his past projects. "The first vehicle project I built ended up being Jay Leno's cobra" he says with a smile.

But, he takes the most pride in gearing up the next generation of master metal workers. "It is really fascinating to bring people to the class and be able to express that love that I have for shapes and designs and be able to teach them something that is an ultra rare art".

The academy for the art of metal shaping is a non-profit. They are always looking for donors who are passionate about the trade - to help grow their programming.

Connect with them here: http://www.aametalshaping.com/
 


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