For the past decade, French artist, Baptiste Debombourg, has exploited the fragility of glass to explore the “evidence of humanity" out of scenes of apparent wreckage, as GLASS Quarterly contributing editor Victoria Josslin put it in a Fall 2015 (GLASS #140) profile of the artist. And Debombourg’s three recent exhibitions prove just as gasp-inducing as their predecessors. “RAGING DREAMS—over the horizon” by Debombourg opened May 19 at Gallery S12 in Bergen, Norway to celebrate the gallery’s 10th anniversary. According to the S12 event announcement, energy and the power of dreams are guiding motifs in the installation, composed mostly of laminated broken glass. Like the artist’s previous works, “RAGING DREAMS” references the destructive power of natural forces with large, immersive and engulfing installations that creep from the gallery walls to its floors with edges that resemble a breaking wave.
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Seattle-based glass artist Ethan Stern, whose work will be on view at Traver Gallery tomorrow as a part of a new exhibition titled "Cut Clear," is perhaps most well-known for his used of saturated gem-tones in high-contrast, semi-opaque engraved sculptures. This exhibition, however, marks the end of a slow-drifting departure from the chromatic intensity of his previous work. The work in the "Cut Clear" series employs similar forms and textures of Stern’s past work, but without the color that was so aesthetically integral. The GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet spoke with Stern by phone to discuss the artist’s evolution and his unlikely recent source of inspiration — stylistically dated and aesthetically overwrought cut-crystal.
On a deep-sea archaeological excavation in the Caribbean, designer and glass artist Laura Kramer discovered that she was perhaps too invested in the aesthetic form of each artifact. In the process of cleaning a find, Kramer labored assiduously over the excavated object almost as if each was an individual work of art rather than an objective relic of past civilizations. Her temptation to influence the aesthetic presentation of these pieces helped her decide not to continue her career as an archeologist.
The Toyama City Institute of Glass Art (TIGA) is now accepting applications for its sought-after artist-in-residence program, set to take place October 19 to November 29, 2017. Each year, TIGA selects one artist of any glassmaking discipline to work and live for six weeks in Toyama, Japan, aptly dubbed “Glass Town”—a seaside city with a 400 year-old crafts tradition. TIGA’s artist-in-residence program was established in 2010 to invigorate the local community and promote Toyama’s rich cultural and arts heritage. Former artists-in-residence, selected from an international and diverse group of applicants, include Anna Mlasowsky (2011), Ethan Stern (2012), Ben Wright (2013), Pavlina Cambalova (2015), and Matthew Szösz (2016). The current faculty includes head professor Jin Hongo and associate professor Amy Rueffert.
This afternoon, the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, Nebraska, will unveil The Chihuly Sanctuary—an extensive installation, featuring more than 200 original works by lauded glass maestro, Dale Chihuly. The sanctuary is a keystone of the Healing Arts Program at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and its clinical partner, Nebraska Medicine. and was made possible by a lead gift from Omaha philanthropists, Walter Scott and his late wife, Suzanne. The Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center began construction in 2010 thanks to a major donation by Pamela Buffet and her late husband Fred, a relative of billionaire and Omaha native, Warren Buffet. Fred Buffett died of complications from kidney cancer in 1997. The 615,000-square-foot building cost $323 million to construct and is set to open its doors to patients in June.
One of New York’s leading glass art institutions, Heller Gallery presents an exhibition featuring works by artist and designer, Laura Kramer, who synthesizes natural forms and uncommon objects in glass to "explore the liminal." Since 2000, Kramer has created intriguing glass sculptures from found curios and organic objects, like wasp nests and barnacles. Her objects explore the hybridization of fine art and natural findings, mimicking shapes and textures found in the natural world while defying any accepted system of classification.
The Pittsburgh Glass Center has unveiled an exhibition by glass artist and self-proclaimed mad scientist, Leana Quade, best-known for her coiled glass springs and shattering a flat piece of tempered glass by ratcheting it into a tighter and tighter curve until it explodes. You can experience the nerve-rattling effect of her performance piece Release (2017) in the video below.
The gallery at Glasmuseum Frauenau in Frauenau, Germany, is celebrating the life and work of seminal glass artist, Erwin Eisch with an exhibition that runs through June 30th. It opened on April 17th, on the eve of the artist’s 90th birthday. Glasmuseum Frauenau is a public museum founded by Eisch and former Frauenau mayor, Alfons Hannes in 1975, but the small Alpine town boasts a 500-year-old glassblowing tradition. Inspired by the international Studio Glass movement, of which he had been a pioneer, Eisch established the museum in his hometown to showcase the possibilities of glass technology and design.
The Winter Garden at Brookfield Place (formerly the World Financial Center) is the site for a recently unveiled installation by renowned Thai artist Pinaree Sanpitak. A leading artist from Thailand, and enjoying an international reputation, Sanpitak was already an established multidisciplinary artist when she became intrigued by glass on a 2008 trip to Murano, Italy, where she collaborated with Italian masters to create several glass sculptures, She continued to work with the material, including during a 2014 visiting artist residency at the Toledo Museum of Art. Her most recent achievement in glass is on display at one of the busiest public spaces in New York City.
San Francisco-based glass sculptor and designer Nikolas Weinstein is not completely comfortable with any of those terms. At least he said as much in a feature article in the Spring 2011 edition of the print magazine (GLASS #122). Weinstein's singular focus is to create large-scale, unorthodox glass sculptures that exist in conversation with the architectural spaces that house them. They also happen to do things you might never have imagined glass can do. Just before Christmas 2016, Weinstein and his team installed their largest and most complex sculpture yet in the lobby of a Jakarta, Indonesia, office building. Weinstein had been asked by the developers of the Noble House, a premier office tower in downtown Jakarta, to design something that would set their new building apart, and the results didn't disappoint.