Distinctions in Glass

Distinctions in Glass | Bremers, Janecký, Shimomoto

 

Distinction can be defined both as a contrast between similar things, and an excellence that sets one thing apart from another. Two discrete meanings for the same word, yet both meanings apply easily to the glass work of the three artists—Peter Bremers, Harue Shimomoto, and Martin Janecký—featured in this exhibition. This gathering of three unique artists highlights the diversity of technique, form, and aesthetic which glass allows the maker. Bremers creates monumental cast glass sculptures—abstract, monochrome references to landscape and space. Shimomoto weaves glass threads into sculptural tapestries, employing clean lines to capture the essence of nature. Janecký is a modern-day Augustus Saint-Gaudens who sculpts molten glass into naturalistic, emotive busts and figures. Their commonality—a gift for manipulating this malleable material into astonishing works of art that elevate the viewer beyond the banal of the everyday.

Peter Bremers was an established light sculptor when he stumbled upon a glassblowing workshop in his native Netherlands, inspiring a journey of discovery in using glass to capture and bend light. The artist sculpts a model out of a dense foam block. By using the kiln cast method, the model is transformed into glass. He is well known for his awesome glass icebergs, inspired by a voyage to Antarctica in 2001, which bridge the psychic gap between humans and the natural world. He masterfully captures nature’s magnificence in flawless glass microcosms, bringing us intimately in tune with nature by kindling our sense of wonder and smallness around her majesty.

cast glass, 25 x 16 x 5.8"
cast glass, 26 x 5.2 x 6"
cast glass, 17 x 12.5 x 5.8"
cast glass, 19 x 25.8 x 3.2"
cast glass, 19.8 x 11.8 x 5.2
cast glass, 15 x 16.7 x 5.6"
cast glass, 17.5 x 12 x 6"

 

 

 

Bremers work in this exhibition turns the journey inward with metaphysical cogitations on space that offer a healing salve in a disconnected and anxious world. Bremers takes the interplay of positive and negative space—an element inherent in our physical experience of three-dimensional sculpture—and extends it in a metaphoric direction. He brings negative space into the sculpture in the form of holes and hollow sections; visible through an outer transparent shell of glass, their volume constantly shifts as the light flows through. These studies of space are monochromatic meditations on form and light—at times intricately faceted, gracefully arched, softly geometric, languidly amorphous. Eloquent descriptors such as Circumscribed, Honey Sweet, Illusional, Optical, Sensuous, and Connected title these “spaces,” signposts that encourage our understanding of Bremer’s artistic intention. Of this series, the artist has written, “Finding ourselves in a time of increasingly negative perception of everyday news events and an overall rising feeling of being unsafe in a world of religious, political, and social divisiveness, we may forget to focus on the possibilities and comfort offered by positive action and attitude. Positive space symbolizes tolerance, appreciation, hope, and opportunity.”

 

While Bremers articulates the grand physical phenomena of nature, artist Harue Shimomoto relishes in its small gestures and broad strokes. Diaphanous curtains of glass express abstract notions—weather shifting with the seasons, light morphing throughout the day, leaves changing their hue, air circling a pond, fields blowing in the wind. Simple colors and forms mingle in a complex but soothing mesh of layered glass rods. Illusionistic depth emerges as Shimomoto deftly wields positive and negative sculptural space and carefully handles light and shadow, distilling moments into shimmering immersive impressions. Like with Bremers, Shimomoto’s work goes beyond mere physical exploration, becoming a meditative journey that holds tightly to the impermanence of fragile moments and shifts the viewer’s gaze beyond the tangible.

fused glass, stainless steel wire, pigment, epoxy, metal hooks, 51 x 37 x 7"
(Sun Spring Light) fused glass, stainless steel wire, pigment, epoxy, metal hooks, 36 x 36 x 7"
(Freezing Night) Fused glass, stainless steel wire, pigment, epoxy, silver leaf, metal hooks, 36 x 36 x 7"

 

 

 

 

Shimomoto was born in Japan and received her BFA from Tokyo’s Musashino Art University, then came to the United States to get her MFA, settling afterwards in Rhode Island. Simplicity and ephemerality have a storied tradition in the Japanese aesthetic, a way of being that Shimomoto embodies, but also one from which she diverges. There is a quiet strength to her work—in its construction but more so it in its message—that makes her a unique amalgam. She has said: “I do not want the viewer to be too conscious of the glass. I almost believe that glass itself is too beautiful to be a medium. Many people see glass as functional object or decorative material. I want to break these images of glass and give it a different quality. Therefore, I am careful to make my work stronger than my medium.”

Sculpted glass 15.75 x 12 x 11.75"
alternate view approx. 27.5" h on stand
Sculpted glass 13 x 12.5 x 9.5"
alternate view

 

 

 

 

Martin Janecký is a master handler of the medium of glass, coaxing impossibly naturalistic figures and animals out of the material. Janecký was born to be a glassmaker, working in his father’s glass factory in the Czech Republic beginning at the age of 13. He likes to say “I didn’t pick glass, glass picked me.” After graduating from the glass school Nový Bor, he embarked on a path that has taken him to glass programs all over the world as a visiting artist and instructor to over 600 students a year. Teaching has been accompanied by endless learning, the time to formulate and hone his personal aesthetic, and the opportunity to push and perfect his innovative glass molding technique.

 

By “sculpting inside the bubble,” (blowing the basic bubble, then opening a hole and molding it with different tools from both the inside and the outside), Janecký achieves extraordinary realism and startling detail in his faces. Nooks, crevices, lines, and protuberances gradually emerge, a map of human emotion drawn in glass, radiating from within as is from a living, feeling soul. When asked about the meaning of his work, he has said: “I make things which fascinate me—not just from the workmanship point of view—I try to give them an expression. I don’t want to make just a realistic portrait. I want to capture feelings and emotions.” The external calm of the artist as he deliberately and slowly works the material belies his own creative mind—active, passionate, always seeking challenge.

 

A distinctive characteristic of glass as a medium is that it responds to challenge, yields to the vision of the passionate artist and skilled technician. A simple set of ingredients heated together to molten consistency, pushed, blown, poured, shaped, colored, etched, and altered in ways as myriad as the imagination can conjure. Peter Bremers, Harue Shimomoto, and Martin Janecký demonstrate the breadth of the physical and creative possibilities of glass because each brings deep devotion to the art, a unique ability to work with the material, and a drive to explore new experiences in glass.

Bertil Vallien at FORM Miami | December 6-10, 2017

“…knowing the exact moment at which to capture a shift of light or expression and wrench the secret from the glass is what it is all about.”

Bertil Vallien, Map IV, 2017, Cast glass, 20.27 x 16.53 x 3.14″

MIAMI, FL: From the Crystal Kingdom in Sweden to the FORM Miami Exhibition, comes this exhibition of Bertil Vallien’s signature sand-cast glass works reflecting the artist’s thoughtful exploration of the multi-faceted relationship of the human journey. Vallien will also be traveling to attend the show.

Bertil Vallien’s focus on looking inward is achieved in myriad ways, one of which is his unique glassmaking technique. A leader in the Swedish glass industry for more than 40 years, Vallien formulated his own method for casting glass in sand that creates depth and radiance in the material. Artworks are driven not by their final appearance—although their visual impact is stunning—but rather by their content. Vallien’s preparatory sketches are carefully considered blueprints of both the external form and the inner details. Layers—both physical and psychological—are created through a multistep process. Surface textures result from the imprint of objects placed on the walls of the mold, which are also dusted with powdered metal oxides to release color. As the molten glass is poured into the mold, Vallien incorporates a variety of objects from sheet metal and glass threads, to figures and other colored forms. Once the glass cools, the suspended animation reveals itself in full glory. Light reflects off the brilliant surfaces and assorted angles of the perimeter, but more dramatically it emanates from within.

Vallien has said that “knowing the exact moment at which to capture a shift of light or expression and wrench the secret from the glass is what it is all about.” Just as his technical approach unearths internal “secrets,” so his visual motifs are explorations of the subconscious. The artist is motivated by various things—from stories he hears on the news, to people he has met, to his religious upbringing and questions about faith, to wars both historical and contemporary. Despite these concrete inspirations, the work is not meant to pose facile questions with prescribed answers. Umberto Eco wrote “I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret is as though it had an underlying truth.” Vallien’s art embraces this idea, transforming the events and experiences that inspire him into universal archetypes and symbols, upon which viewers layer their own perspectives. A shifting “truth” is created when two spirits—that of the artist and that of the viewer—coalesce. Through both physical expression and symbolic associations, Vallien senses the world from the inside out and opens this channel of experience to his viewer. Definitive answers become unnecessary, and an enlightened, empathetic, and open-minded ethos rises.

If You Go:
December 6-10,  Bertil Vallien, FORM
The artist will be present.

 

 

CHIHULY BASKETS: CELEBRATING FORTY YEARS

“Baskets was the first series that I did that really took advantage of the molten properties of the glassblowing process. Now, for the first time, I really felt I was breaking new ground with an ancient technique.”

 

For many celebrated artists, the path to creative achievement is gradual, studied, and often plagued by self-doubt. David Galenson, Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago and the author of Old Masters and Young Geniuses: The Two Life Cycles of Artistic Creativity (2007) calls these people “experimental innovators.” On the opposite end of this spectrum are what Galenson terms “conceptual innovators”—those whose brilliance arrives in a relative blaze, at a fairly early age, disrupting convention. Dale Chihuly is a conceptual innovator whose Baskets were a flashpoint for his originality. Forty years later, he is still a leader of the avant-garde and prodigious creative force, and the Baskets remain vital in the fascinating arc of his career.

Dale Chihuly, The Boathouse hotshop Seattle, 1993

Dale Chihuly had a meaningful encounter with traditional Northwest Indian basketry in 1977, during a visit to the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma. He was a young vanguard in the field of glass (he had become the head of the glass program at Rhode Island School of Design and co-founded the Pilchuck School of Glass in Washington by age 30). Chihuly was enthralled by how time had transformed the woven baskets into bowed and slumping objects. This touchpoint precipitated a breakthrough not only in Chihuly’s forms but also in his techniques for achieving them. He harnessed the interconnected powers of heat, gravity, centrifugal force, breath, and glass to achieve impossible thinness and dynamic asymmetry. Chihuly has stated: “Baskets was the first series that I did that really took advantage of the molten properties of the glassblowing process. Now, for the first time, I really felt I was breaking new ground with an ancient technique.”

His earliest Baskets, such as his 1979 Tabac Basket Set with Oxblood Jimmies, are daring and seemingly effortless. Like an alchemist Chihuly uncouples form from function and instead forges undulant containers of hue and luminosity. The muted palette reminiscent of Native American baskets defines the early work but is also an enduring muse. The extraordinary forms of Tabac Basket with Drawing Shards and Oxblood Body Wraps (2008) are like feats of Art Nouveau architecture writ in glass. This series is done in natural fiber tones akin to the objects that informed them, but the native formline design of the baskets is abstracted in Chihuly’s hand.

Tabac Basket Set with Oxblood Jimmies, 1979, 6 x 14 x 14″

These forty years of Baskets are not a linear progression, wherein one builds upon the next until superiority is achieved; rather they are collection of transcendent moments through time.

While some works have maintained an aesthetic affiliation with the baskets Chihuly saw in the 1970s, others are merely kindred spirits. Jasper Black Basket Set with Red Lip Wraps (2000) revels in the drama of the color black; opaque obsidian is complemented by deep blues and shimmering violets, sheathed in a sanguine red. Six nested containers produce a panoply of shapes and crevices where light is absorbed and refracted by the lustrous surfaces. With the recent Golden Sapphire Basket Set with Midnight Blue Lip Wraps (2017), Chihuly continues to push the limits of the material. The outer vessel is turned on its side—its form part basket part sea creature, variegated blues dancing around the cresting and plunging contours. Nested inside this frame, six unique forms coalesce in a masterpiece of blown glass, the splendid blues enhanced by peeks of golden yellow.

Jasper Black Basket Set with Red Lip Wraps, 2000, 6 x 13 x 13″

Entwined with the narrative of the Baskets are Chihuly’s drawings, in which we see the artist’s instinctive and spontaneous creativity most viscerally. In a medium not bound by gravity, design elements can be liberated from their surfaces, nested forms emancipated, circles need not close. Not studies for specific works, the gestural drawings express Chihuly’s big ideas to both his glassblowing team and his viewers. Then, as if the works on paper could shatter like glass into “shards,” details from the drawings become design elements of the Baskets themselves, exemplifying the creative loop that characterizes Dale Chihuly.

Pablo Picasso once said that “to search means nothing in painting. To find is the thing.” Such a prophetic statement could only usher from a true conceptual innovator, one who inspired a paradigmatic shift in art-making without seeming like it was any effort at all. Dale Chihuly has done the same for modern studio art glass, and the Baskets are the bellwether of this movement. Chihuly’s magic is intangible and unmistakable—a mix of technical genius, limitless imagination, fearlessness, experimentation, and an unfailing eye for the beautiful.

Jeanne Koles is an independent museum professional with a focus on cultural communications.

Golden Sapphire Basket Set with Midnight Blue Lip Wraps, 2017 (detail), 19 x 22 x 22″

 

Master of Beauty | Lino Tagliapietra

To behold Lino Tagliapietra’s glass art is to perceive pure beauty, inspired by the magnificence of the artist’s surroundings, travels, and experiences. In his 1753 volume Analysis of Beauty, English painter and writer William Hogarth (1697-1764) laid out the six principles that affect our perception of beauty: fitness (fitting parts of a whole elegantly together); variety (blending shapes and colors harmoniously); uniformity (balancing symmetry with shifting perspectives); simplicity (discarding superfluous elements); intricacy (leading the eye with thoughtful composition); and quantity (inspiring awe through grandness). Hogarth’s ground-breaking tome also described the serpentine “line of beauty,” an s-shaped curve used in art that awakens the viewer and is pleasing to behold. Flawlessly orchestrating all six of Hogarth’s tenets and deftly employing the “line of beauty,” each work by Tagliapietra beguiles the viewer, transporting them to a place of unadulterated grace.

The Fenice series epitomizes the lively allure of the curving line. Impossibly elongated pulls of glass twist dynamically through the air. Hot reds give way to fiery oranges, which cool to deep blues, manifesting the myriad colors of flame as the glass phoenix rises. The interplay of curves in the installation of three Fenice works reveals myriad expressions as the viewer moves around the piece. Equally in the Dinosaur works, a sense of infinity defies their physical boundaries. The magnificence of the extinct beasts are expressed, softened through graceful bends in their necks and modernized through the graphic patterns of the glass. A repetition of circles plays delightfully against the kaleidoscopic swathes of color that surround the surfaces.

The graceful arcing forms of the Forcola works are also enhanced by undulating layers of design. Concentric circles—in some cases from a single color family, in others from complimentary hues—stretch like taffy to reveal the exquisite patterns inlaid in the glass. So named because their shape artfully recalls the rowlocks of Venetian gondolas, the Forcola works—like so many by Tagliapietra—expressively celebrate a place of affection for the artist.

Geography has had a considerable influence on the artist, who has traveled the world extensively to work and teach; each location leaves its mark on his soul and in his work. Recalling woven African baskets in form and pattern, the globular Africa vase sits nimbly on a narrow foot and revels in a vibrant, jewel-like palette. Rippled “lines of beauty” wind their way up the vase in both directions, culminating in a vivid blue lip of gently waving canes. The rolling swells of a sand dune are captured in the intricate Sahara, its amber coloring punctuated by an azure oasis. Like the blue sea that gives way to the volcano for which they are named, the Stromboli works erupt with cascading cerulean lava, punctuated by frenetic green swirls and daubs of crimson.

Just as Tagliapietra brings a unique perspective to the places he visits by rendering them abstractly in glass, so he brings his forward-looking ideology to artistic traditions. A long-lost glass making technique using avventurine glass is reborn in Tagliapietra’s hands. In a triumph of alchemy, suspended metal in the glass infuses the material with shimmering luster. Hogarth wrote that “simplicity gives beauty even to variety.” In the Avventurine works, minimal and classical shapes are brilliantly juxtaposed with a mosaic of swirling, sparkling designs.

Whether by the 18th century standards of a thinker like Hogarth, or by modern codes, Lino Tagliapietria is a master of beauty. To combine centuries-old traditions with contemporary explorations of the medium, to pay homage to the intimate places he knows and the faraway worlds he has visited, and to do so with such an inherent understanding of what makes things beautiful—this is a true gift. Tagliapietra’s sumptuously articulated forms and dazzling designs are masterfully balanced yet playful. A “line of beauty” unfurls in front of our eyes in each work and in the body of work as a whole. 

CAST, CUT and COLD October 2017

 

Karsten Oaks in the Cold Shop.

Glass is an amazing medium. Whether in front of a furnace or a grinding wheel, the nature of the glass allows it to be formed by who holds it and the only limit to its potential is the imagination, and of course the technical acumen of the maker. It must be the only medium from which so any different artistic techniques can be used, and so many uses are yet to be discovered. Out of necessity and the inherent nature of the medium, working with hot glass is a quicker process than when it is cast or cold worked; as a result, much of the available glass is hot glass. Because it is not quite as mesmerizing as glass blowing, and it is so time consuming to make, many people do not realize that cold working can take months for one piece. Realistic, abstract, simple, or complex sculptures may be realized through these process’. This October, Schantz Galleries features works by artists whose work is Cast, Cut and Cold.

 

 

 

Made in N.E.

Stockbridge, MA:  Often when one hears the term Art Glass, a work of art created in a hot furnace with a blowpipe is what first comes to mind. This exhibit gives visitors a glimpse into the diverse techniques that creative hands and minds can employ in this medium. Made in N.E. is a curated exhibition of blown, cast, cut, fused, laminated, and sculpted works in glass created by fourteen artists in New England including; William Carlson, Daniel Clayman, Dan Dailey, Bernie D’Onofrio, Robin Grebe, Dorothy Hafner, Eric Hilton, Sidney Hutter, K. William LeQuier, Martin Rosol, Thomas Scoon, Harue Shimomoto, Jen Violette, and Steven Weinberg.Made in N.E. celebrates the intersection of global and local technique and tradition. Some of the artists, like Eric Hilton, Martin Rosol, and Harue Shimomoto, bring international perspectives to the show, as emigrants or immigrants to the U.S. who chose to settle in New England. Martin Rosol of MA, for example, became a naturalized American citizen in 1994. His exhibited works present the viewer with Rosol’s innovations on the Czech glass tradition. Other featured artists, such as Jen Violette, are dyed-in-the-wool New Englanders. Violette herself found initial artistic inspiration in the artworks and lifestyle of her grandparents who earned their living as studio artists in Maine. She currently resides in Vermont on a small farm, drawing inspiration for her hot sculpted glass pieces from the gardens on her land.  

 

The artists’ processes are as diverse and nuanced as their origin stories. Many of these artists use multiple techniques, several incorporate varied materials such as metal, mahogany, or stone into their glass sculptures. Whether viewing the installations of Bill Carlson, Daniel Clayman, and Dan Dailey or the smaller-scale work of Robin Grebe, Dorothy Hafner, and Sidney Hutter, one cannot help but marvel at the diverse and incredibly unique art united by the medium of glass and the community behind it.

Dorothy Hafner at work on her designs.

A fair number of newer glass artists and many who started working during the earlier days of the American Studio Glass Movement, which began about 55 years ago, progressed through ceramics as a stepping stone to the alluring medium of glass. Dorothy Hafner, trained as a painter, sculptor, and ceramicist, first designed for Tiffany & Co. and the Rosenthal Company before venturing into the world of glass. Hafner collaborated with the famous Lino Tagliapietra and has since shifted her focus to flat glass, fusing her layer upon layer of intricately cut designs to create her trademark bright translucent panels.

 

Given the translucent nature of glass, it is no surprise that a number of glass artists begin as lighting designers or emphasize lighting in their work. Daniel Clayman, who recently created the vast Rainfield installation at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design’s new Design and Media Center, started as a theater lighting designer before embarking on a very successful career in glass. Clayman’s continued interest in light’s behavior and feats of engineering are apparent in his cast and cut glass works, which in some instances expand to fill a vast room, and in others fit on a pedestal.

Dan Dailey, known for his range of technique and the versatility of his work, has been creating sculptures and functional art with an emphasis on lighting since 1970. His series of chandeliers and sconces captivate viewers with their whimsy and technical prowess evident in their execution. Every piece of Dailey’s work begins with a drawing, and many incorporate multiple medias and glass-working processes. He is a master of the most seductive of all techniques, blown and hot-sculpted glass. The immediacy, the fire, and the viscous honey-like consistency of molten glass lure many artists and craftspeople into its web. Watching is irresistible, doing is difficult. Dailey, a veteran of the glass-blowing arena, has certainly proven his commitment to his art over the course of more than forty-five years as a working artist. Often narrative, his sculptures and architectural installations explore extraordinary concepts with a wide range of themes and styles articulated through blown, cast, and pâte de verre glass expertly woven with elements of bronze, steel, aluminum, and light.

A number of artists who work in cast glass, such as William Carlson, Robin Grebe, and Thomas Scoon, also incorporate alternate media into their glass sculptures. After making a mold from sand, plaster, or another material that can hold its shape while filled with molten glass, the artist pours the hot glass into the void, sometimes adding elements to the piece while it is still warm, sometimes waiting for it to cool before juxtaposing the fragility against the strength of metal or stone.

Eric Hilton

Eric Hilton at work.

Some glass artists follow their casting process with “cold working,” or the manipulation of glass at room temperature. “Cold working” almost always involves cutting or carving the glass, by hand with a tool or by means of a machine. Eric Hilton employs varied methods, using a waterjet or a copper wheel. Sidney Hutter pioneered a laminating process that includes ultraviolet adhesive and specialty pigments to create and color his precisely cut plate glass into the suggestions of vessels. Martin Rosol, too, plays with color in his laminate as well as the finishes of his sculptures. He sandblasts to achieve a softer opacity, or grinds and polishes to create surfaces that shine like ice. After carefully planning each piece, the internationally exhibited Steven Weinberg casts and carves optical crystal in his Rhode Island studio.

Glassblowing and particularly hot sculpting also offer many opportunities for the rendering of an artistic vision, for innovation and experimentation. The potential and allure of this medium plus fire and breath is reflected in Bernie D’Onofrio’s stunning rivulets of glass that seem suspended within an exterior transparent vessel, or in the wild, almost alive glass strands tamed by K. William LeQuier’s talent. Jen Violette’s irresistible garden vegetables and rabbits charm viewers, her sculpted hands embody grace.

Experimentation in this art form continues to produce amazing works, such as the delicately woven threads of glass by Harue Shimomoto. The presentation is as exacting as the process, as Shimomoto suspends layers of glass tendrils from above to create depth and subtle movement as the viewer shifts and perspective changes, creating an ethereal suggestion of a textile landscape.

 

Dan Clayman

 

Bill Carlson

 

Dan Dailey

Dan Dailey

 

Bernie D'Onofrio

Bernie D’Onofrio

 

Robin Grebe

 

Dorothy Hafner

 

Eric Hilton

 

Sidney Hutter

Sidney Hutter

 

K WIlliam LeQuier

 

Martin Rosol

Tom Scoon

Harue Shimomoto

Jen Violette

Steven Weinberg

Visit Schantz Galleries in Stockbridge, MA, to see how New England artists exemplify the diversity of technique, perspective, and origin that the world of contemporary art glass has to offer.  

 

 

 

 

IF YOU GO:    Made in N.E.

Exhibition May 8 – June 24, 2017

Gallery Hours:  Open daily 10:30-5:30 

Schantz Galleries Contemporary Glass, 3 Elm Street, Stockbridge, Massachusetts 01262

Tel: 413-298-3044 www.schantzgalleries.com   

Artist Reception: Friday June 23, 4-6pm

 

Chihuly Gifts Artwork at Tacoma’s Union Station

 

Chandelier and the Monarch Window at Union Station

Now more than ever, we feel compelled to find and celebrate the good in order to stay hopeful. We are very excited to share the news with you that in late January 2017, Dale and Leslie Chihuly gifted artwork at Union Station (Tacoma, Washington) to the United States. Mayor Strickland and the representatives from the GSA and the Tacoma Art Council recognized Dale and Leslie with a certificate of appreciation, and thanked them for making this amazing body of work accessible to everyone. Dale dedicated the work in memory of his father George, his mother Viola, and his brother George.

Click play for a preview and/or click the link to watch the full video Chihuly at Union Station.

It’s so great that Leslie and I could donate these installations to the GSA so people will forever go into that beautiful restoration and see my artwork there and the beautiful views of Mount Rainier… – Dale Chihuly

Thank you, Dale and Leslie, for your generosity and inspiration.

Click here to watch the full video on Chihuly’s Vimeo page.

To see more of Chihuly’s work, click here.

STANKARD RELEASES OUTSTANDING NEW BOOK—STUDIO CRAFT as CAREER

We are honored to represent and know Paul Stankard, and looking forward to three new pieces by him this arriving at the gallery this week! Until then, we are announcing his newest book, sure to be collected by artists and art collectors alike.

Paul Stankard, internationally renowned glass artist, recently published his third book, Studio Craft as Career, A Guide To Achieving Excellence In Art Making.  Stankard crafted this verbal artistry with two distinct purposes in mind.  The first half of this superb resource offers readers a special insight into Stankard’s career, his personal journey that led him to find his niche and allowed him to grow and reach his full potential as an artist.  In the second half, Stankard presents biographical career information and advice from a broad cross section of well-respected artists, who, along with Stankard, are important to the contemporary American craft landscape.  The outstanding photography selected by the author, serves to enhance and enrich the words of experience and wisdom offered by the author.

Stankard wrote this book to be a provocative text filled with harsh realities and dreams that fill the life and work of an artist.  The book was conceived to share personal experiences and offer direction for career growth.  Stankard thoroughly enjoys teaching and sharing his craft in his role as the Artist in Residence and Lecturer at Salem Community College.  He inspires students to search for their individual creative spirits and reach their full potential in life.  This book reflects Stankard’s passion for teaching.

Stankard is also the author of No Green Berries of Leaves:  The Creative Journey of an Artist in Glass; and, Spark the Creative Flame:  Making the Journey from Craft to Art, both highly acclaimed by the academic and literary communities.

Paul Stankard

Paul Stankard, Meditation in Herman Melville’s Garden, 2016 Lampwork encased in 4″ orb

About Paul Stankard           

Paul Stankard’s work is represented in more than 60 museums worldwide.  A pioneer in the studio-glass movement, Stankard is known for interpreting native flowers in small scale glass sculptures.  His work explores and interprets color, texture and delicacy while continuing to examine and celebrate the fecundity of the plant kingdom. He is a Fellow of the Corning Museum of Glass, Fellow of the American Craft Council, and received the coveted Urban Glass Award – Innovation In Glassworking Technique. Stankard has been recognized with Masters of the Medium honor by the James Renwick Alliance affiliated with the Renwick Gallery, Smithsonian Institute, Washington D.C. and was also awarded the Glass Art Society’s Lifetime Achievement Award.  Stankard and his wife Pat live in Mantua, New Jersey.

LINO TAGLIAPIETRA | INSPIRATIONS

Current Exhibition

 

Lino Tagliapietra continues to share his experience as a technically masterful glass blower, teacher and artist who travels the world in search of inspiration for his work. This thirst for discovery mirrors one of his favorite explorers, Corto Maltese, a character from an early graphic novel by Italian comic book artist Hugo Pratt (1927-1995), who was venerated for fantastical stories and graphic dexterity.  An interesting sidebar is that Lino’s wife, (Lina Ongaro), of over 56 years had and uncle who also was an artist who worked alongside Pratt when he was in Venice. Through the artwork and stories, Lino found a simpatico spirit and fellow adventurer in the tales of Corto’s travels as told through Pratt’s art.

Fórcole, 2016 38¾ x 11 x 8″; 38½ x 14 x 8″; 37 x 11 x 8″                                                                                   photo: Kim Saul

This year at SOFA Chicago, Lino Tagliapietra will debut several new series—Cayuga, Contarini and Fórcole—all reminiscent of places or experiences visited or imagined by the artist; he also continues to explore both panel glass and the sumptuous and challenging avventurine with a five Dinosaur Installation. Lino is forever striving to find new inspirations, forms, and techniques as well as opportunities to make his work.

Gondolier in Venice, see the fórcole, on which the oar is resting.                                                       Adobe stock photo

 

Fórcole, which Tagliapietra designed specifically for this show, are named after the rowlocks found on the gondolas in the beautiful lagoons of his native Venice. In this body of work, he re-imagines the centuries-old tradition of making fórcole, metamorphosing a functional object into sculpture. With remarkable technical ability, he communicates his expressive aesthetic and his light, intelligent, and inspiring presence. The strength and beauty of the glass parallels the natural vitality of the young wood that becomes fórcole. As with traditional Venetian oarlocks, each of Tagliapietra’s Fórcole requires an impressive amount of time and labor. Much as the wood must first be carefully chosen, hewn, seasoned, carved, and then finished with sandpaper and a sealant, so the glass and colors must first be made, blown into a shape, cut from the vessel, carved with battuto, shaped through slumping in a kiln, and polished. The Maestro has stated that it will be some time before he creates additional Fórcole because the amount of work that goes into each piece is so staggering.

Cayuga, 2016 21½ x 14½ x 7½”                                                                                                                                    photo: Russell Johnson

Cayuga experiments with shape as the compressed sides diverge from Lino’s more trademark symmetry. Lino worked with this form in May of this year at the MIT hot shop in Cambridge, MA and was very excited about the shape of the vessel. The sensual piece in this exhibition was made a few months later, at the GAS conference in at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, NY, and named after the nearby Finger Lakes. When he travels to work in different hot shops around the world, Lino prefers to bring his own color which he has special recipes for, and one of his favorites is his own red.

Lino Tagliapietra, schantz galleries

Contarini, 2016 20 x 9¼ x 6″                                                                                                                                     photo: Russell Johnson

Another new series is the Contarini, first blown May 2016 at the MIT hot shop in Cambridge, MA. Lino’s Contarini— colorful, multilayered vessels with clear murrini and swirling, vertical composition—are defined by wildly mod graphics. They are so named because they reminded Lino of the windows the Palazzo Contarini, in Venice.

Palazzo Contarini in Venice.                                                                                       Adobe stock photo

The Contarini family is a noted Venetian family, from which eight Doges led the Venetian Republic forward through ever changing ages between 1043 and 1797. The famous architect, Andrea Palladio, who was employed by the Contarini and their relatives, designed several of the most outstanding neo-classical structures in the Veneto’s environs.

Lino Tagliapietra

Dinosaur Installation, 2016,  29½ x 45¾ x 5″                                                                                                                                                             photo: Russell Johnson

A true adventurer with the material, another series in Tagliapietra’s recent body of work revitalizes a centuries-old glass-making technique called avventurine (from the Italian for adventure), which began in 17th-century Murano when a member of the Miotti family accidentally dropped some copper filings into a glass batch. The delicate process of incorporating metal into liquid glass then cooling it in low oxygen, reducing atmosphere as the mineral deposits clump gingerly together is capricious and often results in failure. Just to prepare the material is a feat of alchemy. When it works, shimmering striations of crystallized metal suspend wondrously in the glass. As Tagliapietra has described it “…sometimes I feel that it is not glass … but I feel the absolute magic and the preciousness of a material that came from the past.” The serpentine Fenice and the elegant Oca reveal how colors can vary from silver to gold, copper red to blue, purple to green depending on the filtering effects of the colored glass comprising the body of the material, and how the suspended metal deposits can be pulled into assorted shapes.

In Greek and Roman mythology, the Muses were a source of knowledge and the inspirational goddesses of the arts—music, sculpture, poetry and dance. Glass artist Lino Tagliapietra finds his muses all around him. Whether traveling to upstate New York or an island in the South Pacific, glimpsing a water bird stretching her neck to the sky or the reflection of colors in his lagoon, Lino discovers new ideas wherever he finds himself. He is completely open to the experiences of life and perpetually looking forward to the next inspiration.

It is rare that the maestro is without his camera, ready to capture the next encounter along his travels and to remind himself later of the colors and spirit of a person, place or time.                                                                                  photo: Jim Schantz

Renowned Artist Dale Chihuly to Exhibit in Stockbridge

Chihuly at Schantz Galleries 2016

Opening Reception, Friday, July 8, 2016, 4–6 p.m.

Dale Chihuly, Sunrise Topaz Chandelier, 2016 detail

Dale Chihuly, Sunrise Topaz Chandelier (detail), 2016, 14 x 6 x 5½’

 

Stockbridge, MA (July 2016) Renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly will exhibit several of his works of art to include two large Chandeliers and a Persian Wall, at the Schantz Galleries in Stockbridge, MA, from July 8 through August 28, 2016. While Chihuly is famous for his ambitious architectural installations in notable cities, museums, and gardens around the world, Schantz Galleries provides visitors with a more intimate setting in which to enjoy the works on view.

With a background in interior design and architecture, Chihuly has always been interested in space and light. Working within the architecture of the gallery, he presents several of his well-known series along with a few large-scale installations. The centerpiece of the gallery is Sunrise Topaz Chandelier, a two-tiered Chandelier consisting of approximately 430 amber, gold, and clear elements.

An American sculptor, Chihuly has mastered the alluring, translucent, and transparent qualities of glass, ice, water, and neon, to create works of art that transform the viewer experience. He is globally renowned for his ambitious, site-specific architectural installations in public spaces and for his work in more than 250 museum collections.

In addition to the blown-glass sculptures, Chihuly has included sixteen of his works on paper. As Nathan Kernan has stated in an essay, “Drawing into Space: Chihuly Drawing Revisited,” Chihuly’s drawings over the past thirty-five years constitute a parallel visual world as compelling and original as that of his amazing sculptures.” The artist has always used drawing as a form of conveying his concepts and ideas for his sculptures, and one can certainly experience his expressive energy and love of color. “You can more directly sense my energy in my drawings than in any other way, perhaps,” he has said. “And from the very beginning, the drawings were done, as my glass is done, very quickly, very fast.”

­­­­“We are truly honored to have the opportunity to exhibit works by Dale Chihuly in Stockbridge. Chihuly is one of the most well known living American artists,” gallery owner and director Jim Schantz stated, “and certainly the most recognized glass artist in the world today.”

IF YOU GO:

Chihuly at Schantz Galleries 2016

July 8 through August 28, 2016

Opening Reception Friday, July 8, 2016, 4–6 p.m.

Schantz Galleries Contemporary Glass, 3 Elm Street, Stockbridge, Massachusetts 01262

Tel: 413-298-3044   www.schantzgalleries.com

Exhibition Hours: Open Daily, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.