San Francisco-based glass sculptor, designer, and architect 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.
Viewing: Public Art
Last week, the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston unveiled a public artwork made up of more than 10,000 individual glass droplets. Installed in the atrium of the art college's Design and Media Center on campus, the project was the culmination of an innovative interdisciplinary course taught by independent artist and visiting professor Dan Clayman. A group of MassArt students worked alongside the Providence-based artist to realize this the work entitled Rainfield, which marks the single largest-scale installation realized by Clayman. In an exclusive interview with the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet, the artist explains how the project came about and how it was realized.
Martin Blank has called the concept of "flow" the unifying theme of the last 25 years of his career as an artist, and this is readily apparent in his latest public art commission. Set to be unveiled in Spring 2017 in the small city park next to the recently opened Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown, Blank has created two working fountains in which the multiple glass elements mediate the falling water, and reference it in its cascading forms that appear like splashing water, or eddies. Contrasting with the restrained "New Classical" style of the building's architect, Robert A. M. Stern, Blank's exuberant work animates and enlivens the exterior space with its celebration of gravity and the shared fluidity of water and glass. The GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet spoke to Blank after installation was complete, but before the water would be turned back on, about the project that he calls "the hardest installation he's done in his career."
More than 10,000 individual glass droplets have been strung up in the atrium of the Design and Media Center at Boston's MassArt, the culmination of a project by the college's visiting professor Dan Clayman that is being unveiled this evening. The work is entitled Rainfield, and was constructed during "Structured Light," an interdisciplinary course with 18 MassArt students who worked alongside the Providence-based artist to realize this piece that measures 60-feet long. The completed project represents the largest-scale work Clayman has completed, the latest in his assemblage works that aggregate multiple glass elements to create a massive structure, as he did in his 2014 work Dispersion at Brown University. The installation will remain on view through summer,
A 72-foot-tall, 20-foot-wide public sculpture designed by architectural installation artist Ed Carpenter was unveiled in June 2016 in Taichung, Taiwan. Made from stainless steel and laminated glass, the sculpture stands at the intersection of two public parks outside of the Taichung City Council building.
Through October 25th, the busy Place Vendome, ground zero for Parisian fashion boutiques, will feature two new works by American sculptor Dan Graham, whose architectural installations employ partially mirrored surfaces and refraction to juxtapose viewers with their surrounds and one-another. Two Nodes (2015) features two mirrored cylinders that mix reflectivity with transparency to create a constantly shifting environment that distorts bodies, and overlaps images. In an adjacent outdoor work, Passage Intime (2015), Graham invites users to traverse a narrow passageway, which also provides shape-shifting reflections to viewers, as well as draws narrow boundaries of shared public space.
A large-scale sculpture by identical twins Doug and Mike Starn, the duo's second-ever work in glass, will be installed in mid-September on the lawn of the Princeton University Art Museum. The site-specific sculpture, titled (Any) Body Oddly Propped (2015), features steel, cast bronze trees and six 18-foot tall colored glass panels. According to the official announcement, the sculpture “continues the artists' exploration of organic energy systems through root and branch forms that here also respond to the arboretum-like character of the Princeton campus.” An attempt to evoke the complex experience of light filtering through trees, the sculpture will play off the contrast between the permanence of the structure and the ephemerality by interaction between natural light conditions and the colored glass.
The glass artwork of Dale Chihuly is taking center stage this month in the city of Norfolk, Virginia, site of the Chrysler Museum of Art Glass Pavillion. “Chihuly In The Garden” at the Chrysler Museum of Art, is an outdoor installation currently on view in the museum’s waterfront garden, where it showcases Chihuly’s "Reeds" and "Marlins" in natural lighting outside of the confines of the galleries. The second place to see Chihuly's work is onstage, where it will be featured in two performances of Bela Bartok’s “Bluebeard’s Castle” taking place as part of the Virginia Arts Festival (April 18th & 19th). The opera, which will be performed by the Virginia Symphony Orchestra and held in Chrysler Hall, will utilize six Chihuly sculptures as set pieces to the performance.
Opening on February 19th, and running through April 19th, a forest of 18 transparent spheres will spring up in New York City’s Madison Square Park as part of the ongoing Mad. Sq. Art program that invites major artists to design work for this public park in Manhattan. Titled “Gazing Globes,” the installation is a departure for artist and designer Paula Hayes, who is best known for terrariums populated with living plants. Inside these new gigantic snow-globe structures, which will be set on pedestals of varied heights, a very different ecosystem will be on view. Used batteries, discarded computer parts, and other digital refuse are lit from within to illuminate the entangled detritus. Sprinkled with glitter from finely ground CDs and reclaimed crystals and minerals, the works force us to contemplate our relationship to the environment and to the castoffs of our digital culture. Viewers are encouraged to look beyond the perfect high-tech surfaces of their screens to what is left behind as trash. Worn-out rubber tires and recycled plastic flotsam are suspended in these globes, in their own world but still present and very much non-biodegradable.
On June 27th, the Seattle Art Museum unveiled a new sculptural bench at Olympic Sculpture Park that honors the life and legacy of the late Mary Shirley (1941 - 2014), a Pilchuck board member as well as a Seattle art patron and longime supporter of the museum. The aluminum bench was designed by Ginny Ruffner, and was completed in time for the museum's annual Party in the Park fundraising event last Friday night. Entitled "Mary's Invitation—A Place to Regard Beauty," the work is a functional piece of outdoor furniture offering impressive views of the sculpture garden as well as the nearby Puget Sound. But with its voluptuous swooping lines, it is also Ruffner's expression of the passionate approach to life and art of the art collector it memorilizes who died earlier this year at the age of 73. The bench is made of aluminum and measures 4-feet-high by 9-feet-long.