29 March 2013

Happy Easter!

May you find many chocolate eggs squeezed out by the Easter Bunny!

27 March 2013

Happy Birthday Mies!

Famed Bauhaus Modern architect Mies van der Rohe was born 127 years ago today.  Along with other post-World War I architects, such as Walter Gropius and Le Corbusier, Mies' aesthetic came to define what "modern" looked like in the 20th century.
Seventy-five years ago, Mies van der Rohe arrived in the United States to lead the College of Architecture at Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) in Chicago and profoundly influence the world’s taste and built environment.

As an architecture student at IIT, the Bauhaus-derived philosophy that was based on a deep understanding of materials before the design process could begin had a profound impact on my work. The rigorous discipline instilled a focus on craftsmanship, of which I still rely.
Often the design studies had students learning how to get the maximum from the minimum - above is a 1928 collage by Albrecht Heubner, that was titled Minimal Dwelling - I find that my appreciation of Dadaist imagery and humor must have come from this background. 
Have a slice of Mies -
Leandro Erlich's "Chocolate Mies van der Rohe Barcelona couch" Cake

26 March 2013

2013 - An Art Odyssey! JRA Spring Craft Weekend

James Renwick Alliance "Stars Of Tomorrow" Event at Washington Glass School & Flux Studio.
The studio...its full of STARS!
On Fri. April 5th from 10 to 2pm, the first event in a series of annual fund raisers by the James Renwick Alliance (JRA) will take place at the Washington Glass School and its next door neighbor Flux Studio. The event will feature a huge BBQ, entertainers, local food artisans and beer.
The event is titled " 2013 - An Art Odyssey". Besides artwork by area media-based artists, there will be a theramin player and space videos projected onto walls, also, fortune tellers and space jugglers will go throughout the crowd. Attending this event will be some of the major collectors from this region and from around the country.
The James Renwick Alliance is dedicated to promoting this region’s quality artwork, and have an amazing list of collectors and curators invited. This event is also open to the public, so invite everyone you know!

Event Details:
Date & Time : Friday April 5, from 10AM to 2 PM.
Location: Washington Glass School & Flux Studios
3700 Otis Street, Mount Rainier, MD, 20712
Cost: $35
Please RSVP in advance to Cicie Sattarnilasskorn at the JRA : admin@jra.org
The JRA, a national nonprofit arts organization, is an alliance of prominent artists, collectors, galleries and supporters of the arts which promotes  public knowledge and appreciation of American craft.
Proceeds from the activities of the weekend provide operating funds for the James Renwick Alliance and the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in support of its educational programs, research fellowships, exhibitions, and acquisitions for the permanent collection.

International Glass & Clay 2013 Catalog online

The International Glass & Clay 2013 Catalog - what the well dressed glass library is sporting!
Kicking yourself for missing the International Glass & Clay show that just closed in Washington, DC? Don't let us stop you!  
You can look at the catalog (or catalogue) online - click  HERE to jump to Google docs.

Gauguin Lecture at Montgomery College


“Gauguin, the Self, and  
   the Metaphysics of Identity”

A Lecture-Discussion with
Prof. Claudia Rousseau, Art History and Prof. Daniel Jenkins, Philosophy

The talk will feature explanations of some of Gauguin's paintings. The talk is free and open to the public. 
Thursday, March 28, 2013
5:00 PM
The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Arts Center
Auditorium – Room 101

24 March 2013

High Tea at the International Glass & Clay Exhibit

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) held a "Tea with the Brits" wrap-up social at the International Glass and Clay 2013 exhibit held at Pepco Gallery. Artomatic and the DCCAH have held a collaborative exhibition of glass and ceramics featuring artists from the Sister Cities of Sunderland, England and Washington, DC., ending in high style with a final event held at the gallery. Photos by Miriam Rosenthal.
Tea, cucumber sandwiches, fresh made scones with home-made jams and clotted cream, and a spot of dry sherry were on the menu. 
Artomatic's George Koch addresses the JRA audience.
Novie Trump talks about Laurel Lukaszewski's ceramic sculpture.
Novie Trump and Michael Janis discuss UK glass artist Colin Rennie's work.
High Tea presenters and organizers (L-R) Novie Trump, Bonnie Schwartz, Mallory Lawson, George Koch,  Michael Janis.
The closing night event of the International Glass & Clay event finished the exhibit with great fun and last minute sales. All agreed that we will miss the fantastic artwork that has been on display, and that with such good results, the connections with our UK artists and colleagues have been made stronger! When is the next collaborative show is the question we all ask!

20 March 2013

American Craft Magazine Features Washington Glass School Artists

Check out American Craft Magazine online.
The April/May issue of American Craft Magazine is now out - within the sheets of the magazine - or at the ACC website, one can see familiar faces names and artworks.
The magazine cover lists the contents: Fossils, Claws, Fur, Chicken Legs, Fangs, Fungi, Spider Eggs and Twigs - so clearly, the magazine is all about WGS.
Marc Petrovic's beautiful blown sculpture "Not The Brightest Bulb" is featured with an article by Glen Adamson, from London's V & A Museum, that asks if craft can connect the viewers more to nature.
Great article by Glen Adamson on the rise of technology and the disconnect with nature.
"Mermaids Past Their Prime" photo by Pete Duvall
Tim Tate is also featured in the article by senior editor Julie Hanus, titled "More Than Human". Julie's article is a fun look at how artists create human/animal imagery to create compelling insights to who we are. His featured work, one of his pieces from his eries '21st Century Sideshows' - a mixed media reliquary titled "Mermaids Past Their Prime". Daily Art Muse blog author Susan Lomuto was the starring actor for the video portrayal of a chain smoking world weary faded maid.
Other glass artists - Martin Janecky and Anne Wolff's works were in an article about Habatat Galleries upcoming 41st International Glass Invitational, which opens April 24. The Michigan gallery will have a concurrent exhibition, titled “eXpose,”at that time that includes works by our Sean Hennessey.
Getting a big spread of 8 pages, Michael Janis is profiled by Rebecca Ritzel.
Forget "Being John Malkovich" - the American Craft Magazine article is about "Becoming Michael Janis"!
photo by Robert Severi
Rebecca talks with Michael and uncovers his past life as an architect in Australia, and how, in a short amount of time, became one of leading 'sgrafitto' glass artists in the world.

If you get the subscription for the magazine - it should be delivered in the next few days. If you want it online - you can get the digital subscription to the magazine HERE.
Or - run right out to the newstand and demand your copy - AT ONCE!

18 March 2013

American Craft Council on "International Glass & Clay" Exhibit

Erwin Timmers, Rebound, part of the 2013 International Glass + Clay show in Washington, DC - photo by Pete Duvall.
The American Craft Council (ACC) gives the Washington, DC US/UK collaborative glass and clay show a mention in the ACC's roundup of national exhibits:

"No time to lose! The 2013 International Glass + Clay runs through March 23 at Pepco Edison Place Gallery in Washington, DC. It's a spectacular showcase of artists from Washington, DC and Sunderland, England, the third creative collaboration since the cities signed a friendship agreement in 2006."

The International Glass and Clay 2013 exhibit is open through March 23, 2013, at Washington, DC's Pepco Edison Place Gallery, located at 702 Eighth Street, NW, Washington, DC. The show is organized by Artomatic and the DCCAH

15 March 2013

Nancy Donnelly in the Washington Post

Glass artist Nancy Donnelly has a solo show of her latest glass artwork on exhibit at VisArt's "Common Ground Gallery" in Rockville, MD. (Through March 24, 2013). Nancy's kiln-shaped glass sculpture and wall reliefs reference natural forms in glass, glass enamel, steel, concrete and transparent color. The Washington Post newspaper has a review of her show in today's (Friday 15 March) paper - what a great review!  Excerpt below is from WaPo art critic Mark Jenkins' article.
From The Washington Post, Friday, March 15, 2013:
"Nancy Donnelly
D.C. artist Nancy Donnelly does landscapes, still lifes and figure studies, all traditional genres. But hers have an added aspect, because they’re translucent. Six years ago, Donnelly began working in glass, which makes even the thinnest of her works sculptural. “Transmission,” her show at VisArts at Rockville’s Common Ground Gallery, encompasses rectangular compositions with just a hint of depth, pieces in which certain elements protrude from the plane and works that are fully three-dimensional.
The last category includes flower arrangements such as “Bouquets,” whose simplified forms suggest pop art’s directness but whose colors subtly shift along the length of the glass fronds. Among the near-flat objects are nature scenes such as “Sea and Sky I” and the more abstract “Tribute to William Morris,” a homage to the Victorian-era designer and theorist that employs a subtle black and green palette. Perhaps the most striking sculptures are those in which well-rounded female nudes, rendered in bluish or greenish glass, emerge from contrastingly hued blocks. They’re metaphors for creation and liberation, making them pertinent not just to one artist who has found her medium.
on view through March 24 at Common Ground Gallery, VisArts at Rockville, 155 Gibbs St., Rockville; 301-315-8200; visartsatrockville.org."

Look at the Post online - click HERE.

14 March 2013

International Glass & Clay - In the Quieter Moments

The opening reception for the International Glass and Clay 2013 was crazy and fun - meeting all the artists was great, but I didn't focus on the works. My good friend, Patrick Oberman of Artomatic invited me to come back to the show on a quiet afternoon and really look.  This posting is intended to contemplate the media based artwork by the talented artists involved in the International show and see what the works say.
The artwork on exhibit invites investigation.
UK glass artist Roger Tye  - Roger has two works in the exhibit, and they each present very different aspects. His wall piece is lush with color and organic plant forms. The glass tendrils curve around and out of the dimensional piece - its a very pretty and appealing work.
Roger Tye's blown glass wall sculpture.
His other sculpture "Fold" has a different feel - its much more narrative. All over the moors and fells of the North of England and southern Scotland, there are strange dry-stone structures - similar to what Roger has sculpted. The stone structures (aka 'sheepfold') were designed to provide a shepherd with a place to hold a few sheep and protect from theft. Roger's sculpture "Fold", made of cast glass and slate, is a witty contemporary commentary on this concept, complete with security camera.
"Fold" by Roger Tye.
US ceramic artist Jeff Herrity has three of his slipcast ceramic "totems" in the show. Jeff's mother was a ceramic artist, and these works harken back to his childhood memories that include kitschy bits and bobs and elements created from ceramic molds. He sees the stacked figures as representative of a group of people that are a clan. We are all may different, yet we rely upon each other – for if one goes missing, we all fall.
Jeff Herrity "Totem I", "Totem II", "Totem III"
UK glass artist James Maskrey has some exquisite narrative glass works in the show - amongst my favorites:
James Maskrey "The Worst Journey In The World"
His blown works all reference the 1910–1913 British Antarctic Expedition led by Robert Falcon Scott. The ill-fated journey was to recover eggs of the Emperor penguin for scientific study. It was thought at the time that the flightless penguin might shed light on an evolutionary link between reptiles and birds through its embryo.
James Maskrey, "Winter Journey", "Last Entry", "The Barrier".
The series based on the story "Worst Journey in the World" and asks, but does not answer, the question of whether their suffering was futile, or whether it would inspire future human beings facing very different challenges. 
Nancy Donnelly's fused glass panels.
US glass artist Nancy Donnelly is exhibiting her beautiful fused glass panels "Thistle & Berries" and "The Night Garden". Both are made from fused frit powders and enamels fired into panels of glass. Her works have a quiet and thoughtful reserve.
Inge Panneels, "Micro Macro"
UK glass artist Inge Paneels' fused glass panels are created using waterjet to precisly cut intricate patterns based on aerial imagery of river estuary juxtaposed with blood vessel structure. The fused glass panel highlights the communalities
Joe Hicks "Bottle"
US clay artist Joe Hicks has some beautiful ceramic stoneware with shino glaze. His works anchor the entry space of the gallery.
Philippa Whiteside's ceramics feature incredible detail. The waterjet cut ceramics tell a story that runs around the cube form in different fonts.
Philippa Whiteside "Hope"
UK ceramic artist Philippa Whiteside works at creating beauty with her detailed clay works. She clearly loves to experiment with surface decoration and texture, and has a fascination with text and words.
Syl Mathis' boat shaped glass/mixed media forms showcase his master craftsman skills.
US glass artist Syl Mathis' artwork has me fall in love with both the glass and the method he displays the kilncast forms. He is very skilled in his metal and stonecarving techniques, and I love his sandcarving of the glass figures.
Syl Mathis, "Ancient Ice", "Time Bound".
The artworks by the artists create intriguing and beguiling relationships with the other works on display. Part of the fun of the show is the new juxtapositions of the different styles and approaches of the art. 
Allegra Marquart's kilnformed & sandcarved glass panels (L) and Erwin Timmers' cast recycled glass sculptures (R) have a great dialog in the gallery.

The International Glass and Clay 2013 exhibit is open through March 23, 2013, at Washington, DC's Pepco Edison Place Gallery, located at 702 Eighth Street, NW, Washington, DC. The show is organized by Artomatic and the DCCAH.
Pepco Edison Place Gallery

12 March 2013

Ephemeral: Interpretations of the Cherry Blossom Opens at Lorton Workhouse

Opening Night Reception for "Ephemeral" at Lorton's Workhouse Arts Center

The National Cherry Blossom Festival started off with a show - at Lorton, VA's McGuire Woods Gallery in the Workhouse Arts Center.
Robert Kincheloe at his installation of glass cherry blossoms. The imagery (made from hot glass) suggests frozen branches with cherry blossoms encased in ice, ready to emerge for the spring.
Curated by Laurel Lukaszewski and Komelia Honja Okim, the show was to express aspects of "fleeting moments and delicate sensibilities". Follows are some photos from the opening night.
Robert Kincheloe's torchworked cherry blossom branches forground, Michael Janis' fused glass panels beyond.

Akemi Maegawa's mixed media sculpture.
Akemi Maegawa and Laurel Lukaszewski share a laugh at the reception.
Dalya Luttwak's sculpture looks incredible.
Some of the artists showing in "Ephemeral" L-R: Robert Kincheloe, Michael Janis, Laurel Lukaszewski, Akemi Maegawa, David Douglas.
Laurel Lukaszewski's delicate cherry blossoms wrap around the center columns of the gallery.
Michael Janis' glass artwork on exhibit.
The exhibit runs through April 7, 2013. There will be a special Cherry Blossom Festival Day, Saturday, April 6, 2013, from 11am-4pm.

Ephemeral: Interpretations of the Cherry Blossom
Workhouse Arts Center
9601 Ox Road, Lorton, VA 22079