It is with deep regret that the Pauls Foundation Board of Directors announce that William Nicholas Frederick, 90, of Chicago, who was a charter member of our Board of Directors and one of a very small number of America's most distinguished metal smiths, died at 11:50 p.m., Friday, May 11, 2012 in Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, Chicago.
Born Dec. 18, 1921, in the farming community of Sycamore where he attended the classic "one-room schoolhouse". Enlisting in the Armed Forces in 1942, he as he put it, "fought the Battle of the Charles River Basin" when stationed in Boston as an Ensign. Being in the Navy allowed him to attend Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he received his Aeronautical Engineering degree. This background undoubtedly is responsible for the inventive structural form in some of his designs. When he was separated from the Navy in 1946, Bill pursued his BFA and MFA degrees in Art from The School of Art Institute of Chicago, where he subsequently taught for six years. He was a member of the Arts Club of Chicago.
Among many diverse projects, liturgical and otherwise, some 400 or more chalices are singularly creative as he never repeated a design. Consistent and distinctive in his designs is the use of the hammered surface. This surface is unique to each craftsman. Bill preferred the textured instead of the smooth, polished surface; it appeared in most of this works. His long career was sustained by word of mouth, reception of many awards and articles in trade publications. Notable was the support afforded by his life partner of more than 50 years, the noted artist Ralph Arnold, who preceded him in death. Bill's creative importance is recognized by many clients, collectors, colleagues, and friends. His work is in several museums including the Art Institute of Chicago.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, July 13, from 5pm to 7pm at the Arts Club of Chicago. The Arts Club is located at 201 E. Ontario St. Chicago, IL (312-787-3997). Valet parking is available. All who knew Bill and who would like to pay tribute to him are welcome to attend. A memorial fund has been established for The Paul's Foundation, 415 Surf, Suite G, Chicago, IL 60657.