a new year of sofa

The fabulous SOFA Show (Sculptural Objects and Functional Art) began its 2012 season on April 20 in New York.

Jeannet IskandarFrom Fragment to Whole: Elongated Ovoid, Jeannet Iskandar

Iskandar returns again this year with her blown glass sculptures. She builds her pieces in 3-D patterns, using repetition to build the form.

Jeannet IskandarBetween Fragment and Whole, Ellipse I,  Jeannet Iskandar

Each segment is blown from molten glass to achieve the shapes, which are then cut and fused together.  The simplicity of the overall form catches the attention, but the complexity of the structure up close is quite intricate.

Jeannet IskandarJeannet Iskandar at the Heller Gallery

Jeannet Iskandar is based in Denmark and has shown her work in galleries in the U.S. and Europe. See more of her work at the Heller Gallery.




glass reflection of favorite things

Neil Wilkin creates some of my favorite things, out of my favorite medium.

Neil WilkinIcicle Shelf, Neil Wilkin

Wilkin is a British artist inspired by forms and colors from the environment.He is considered one of the leading glass artists in the UK.  I find it interesting that he ignores debates about distinctions between decorative and fine art, craft and concept-driven creation. Whether you call it craft, commercial, or fine art, the work is beautiful.

Neil WilkinRaindrop Chandelier, photo by Guus Rijven

On one end of the spectrum, Wilkin offers a gift section on his website for the public.  He also has sold work to internationally famous clients and worked on restoration of Windsor Castle’s fire-damaged chandeliers. He works with internationally renowned artists to to make their own artworks.

Neil WilkinGolden Seed Head,   photo by Guus Rijven

Visit Wilkin’s website to see more of his work: www.neilwilkin.com.  If you want to be completely awed, go to this LINK.  Click on the images to pull up huge, full screen images that are just stunning.

I would also point you to a great blog entry about Neil Wilkin.  I was starting to pull quotes from this article, but decided I would almost quote the entire thing, so you may as well go to the source:  IceCubicle.net (great blog, now defunct, but as of today, still archived online and full  of interesting info to browse).

winter glimmer

A couple of days ago I blogged about the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Washington.  Today we go back there to highlight a current exhibit that puts me in the mood for some winter snow transformation.

Glimmering GoneGlimmering Gone:  Landscape,  Ingalena Klenell and Beth Lipman, photo from Museum of Glass

American artist Beth Lipman and Scandinavian artist Ingalena Klenell have taught and lectured collaboratively around the world, and their first artistic collaboration is being displayed at the Museum of Glass until March 11, 2012.

Glimmering GoneGlimmering Gone:  Landscape,  photograph by melancolysmile.blogspot.com

Living in the Midwest we have to slog through cold and dreary winters, and I can love that introspective time bundled indoors if I am surrounded by the glittering beauty of snow.  Here we are, December 28, and still no snow.  Glimmering Gone at least brings it to my screen.

Glimmering Gonephoto courtesy of Jeff Curtis, Russell Johnson, and the Museum of Glass

The exhibition includes Landscape, as featured here today, but also Mementos and Artifacts. The three parts of the installation are all quite different, bringing together an array of glass working skills with pieces including kiln-formed elements, sculpted work and blown glass elements. See more photos and find out more about these artists on their websites:  Beth Lipman:  www.bethlipman.com, and Ingala Glenell:  www.klenell.com

reflecting nature in blown glass

Glass artist Heather Gillespie creates some of my favorite works of art in the medium of blown glass.

Heather GillespieHeather Gillespie, Oyster Bowls

Her oyster bowls look so molten, as if the glass is still moving, a viscous, shining river of color. Along with the craft of creating the vessel, Gillespie also engraves her work to add fine details.

Heather GillespieHeather Gillespie, detail of engraving

Gillespie graduated from Edinburgh College of Art, and then worked for the prestigious glass company of Lobmeyr.  She became enamored with the 16th century art of copper wheel engraving. There are only a handful of engravers in the U.K. who practice this art.

Heather GillespieHeather Gillespie, Ijos

There are many steps involved in creating these intricately carved pieces.  A series of sketches and designs begins the process. After blowing glass into the determined shape, it must cool slowly in a kiln. The piece is cut a polished to the highest standard.  Finally, the detailed engraving can begin.

Heather GillespieHeather Gillespie, Rope Grown Lighting

Her newest work is the Rope Grown Collection.  Moving from the highly intricate engravings to a simpler form, she reflects the simplicity of nature. See more of her work online: http://www.gillespieglass.co.uk/


more SOFA, so much to see

So much to choose from … I have to use this treasure trove of art to feed the blog this week.  It is a visual feast.

Michael Glancy Michael Glancy, Steel-Blue Witness, 2009
deeply engraved (radiation wave-cut) cast glass object, deeply engraved industrial plate glass, copper, silver 17 x 20 x 20″
photo: Marty Doyle Barry Friedman Ltd.

“The fun part for me is the meticulous work. With a pair of visors that cuts my reality, really tunnels my reality down into a different plane, [I can get] into a micro area. By occupying my hands, it frees my mind.” – Michel Glancy, from Art News

Carolyn Morris BachCarolyn Morris Bach, Bird Earrings

“While I strive for perfection in my design and craftsmanship, I am not overly concerned that every form requires perfectly rounded edges or that every element be an exact replication of its counterpart,” says Carolyn. “If this is art, it should be individual and unique and preserve for the viewer deliberate traces of the decisions for fabrication; the passage of the hands through materials.” – Carolyn Morris Bach

Tammy GarciaTammy Garcia, Untitled, 2006

“I need the challenge of trying new things. I don’t want to repeat the same shapes and designs all the time. Sometimes the shape of a piece changes as I’m working on it, and I have to give in to the change. Sometimes the clay speaks, and I have to listen.” – Tammy Garcia

One of the most interesting things about these posts today and yesterday, is researching the artists.  I hope you have time to follow some of the links to view more of their work and read about their lives.  These SOFA artists are truly world-class.  Many of them are prolific in more than one medium, and all of their work is simply outstanding.  What inspiration!

gorgeous bubbles of glass

Being a glass artist, this medium is something I never get tired of admiring.  I have not tried blowing glass, shaping blobs of liquid from a furnace to transform them into vessels, or sculpture.  I can only imagine the delicate touch required to create “Shipment from California”, by glass and installation artist Hiromi Takizawa.

Hiromi TakizawaHiromi Takizawa, Shipment from California
blown glass, neon, wood

I wonder if they pop if you were to touch them, very gently?

Hiromi Takizawa(same piece,different view)

Hiromi TakizawaHiromi Takizawa, Crossing the Pacific Ocean, 2007.
Blown glass, neon, wood.

She was born and raised in Japan, inspired by native artists as a child.  She now lives in California, but her work is influence by both cultures. See more of her work at: www.hiromitakizawa.com. Her portfolio also features more pictures of the iridized glass bubbles – wonderful.