Rothbort senses ancient and hidden qualities in a certain piece of wood and will finger and study it for several days before he attempts to bring something out of it. He actually tries to get the wood to express itself. He wants the wood to use his talents to work out the creation that has been in it for centuries. One of his sculptures is from the trunk of a tree that stood in front of his house until a gale brought it crashing down on his roof. "I never use the commercial material that most sculptors ordinarily use, " he says." I pick up my material fieldstone and sandstone from the fields, free stone and brownstone from the city lots, driftwood and raftwood from the ocean floors, old barn doors and fence posts from farmland. I use anything decayed where time has left its mark. By carving these materials, I feel myself as a part of nature, and the subject is born directly out of the material."
New York Herald Tribune - Sunday, November 7, 1965