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Araan Schmidt has taught sculpture at Bowling Green State University in Ohio and Alfred and Binghamton Universities in New York. Schmidt was raised in the environment of the University of Iowa's Sculpture Department where his father, Julius Schmidt, taught for 30 years. Because of this, Schmidt was engaged at an early age with materials and processes in a productive and exciting atmosphere. At age 10 he participated in pouring his own mold in an iron pour.

In 2011, Schmidt was awarded the Open Studio Artist Fellowship at Franconia Sculpture Park in Franconia, Minnesota. Schmidt exhibits nationally and internationally, from Beth Allison Gallery in Kansas City, Missouri to Iron Bridge in Coalbrookdale, England. Schmidt is also an active participant in national and international conferences on cast iron art, from Sloss National Historic Landmark Furnaces in Birmingham, Alabama to the International Conference on Cast Iron Art in Kidewelly, Wales.