Gene Tobey, age 60 of Santa Fe and formerly of Port Aransas and Mason, Texas, passed away Wednesday January 4, 2006 at a local hospital following a lengthy illness. He was born May 26, 1945 in Utah to James G. and Annabelle Tobey. Mr. Tobey was a well known southwestern sculptor, known for stylized animal sculptures with his trademark line drawings incised into the surface. Gene began his career as a sculptor/potter and taught sculpture, pottery and three dimensional design at Casper Community College in Wyoming and Linn-Benton Community College in Albany Oregon. In 1985, he and Rebecca married and blended their five children into a family. He began collaborating with Rebecca shortly after their marriage, showing in art galleries across the United States. Together they pioneered large, brightly-colored ceramic animals, and in the mid 90's their work shifted to bronze sculpture with lively innovative patinas. Now, their work ranges from miniature animals to monumental bronzes like the fifteen-foot tall bear at Baylor University Law School. The art world has lost one of its creative innovators, but his family and friends will miss his humor, great sense of adventure, passion for nature and his soul. Gene is survived by his wife of 20 years Rebecca, his children Chris Tobey and wife Angela, Jami Kiendra and husband Mitch, Josh Tobey and girl-friend Josephine Franklin, and his step-daughters Jessica Sequera and husband Hector, and Elizabeth Olmsted and boyfriend Arturo Contreras. He is also survived by his mother Annabella Tobey, his sister Tami Tobey, his brothers Gary Tobey and wife Karen, and Jerry Tobey and wife Susan, along with five grandchildren Christian, Eric, Kayla, Tobey and Delaney. A time of celebration of Gene's life will be held Sunday January 8, 2006 starting at 1:30pm at the family residence located at 37 Droege Rd., Santa Fe, New Mexico 87508. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Gene Tobey Memorial Art Scholarship Fund in care of Mason National Bank, PO Box 1789, Mason, Texas, 76856.
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