We think that as we age we build up who we are. We think we start with a blank slate and that time and experience create depth, patina, personality and character. I am realizing that my life experience has been just the opposite. That the truth of who I am came buried like the pit of a fruit in the center of layers of assumptions that I now discover and remove, one by one, as I create.
I find it to be the same when working in the medium of stained glass. The potential of the medium is hidden inside layers of assumptions and past practice, both my own and the worlds’. My work is a series of experimental glass artworks grounded in traditional stained glass techniques, with the goal of extricating them from these layers to create new expressions of this ancient art form.
I am just beginning to learn and emerge from what I thought I was. And in a way stained glass is as well. It is a medium that is underrepresented in the world of fine art. It holds a space on the creative spectrum that is not easily specified. I believe it is simultaneously craft, architecture and fine art. It has a constructivist component that is challenging and architectural and craft-like. Yet its symbolic and historically narrative role brings it into a realm of artistic conversation. I find it to be the perfect medium in which to explore, understand, debunk and/or refine the tensions in our societal definitions of “Art” and “Craft” and “Architecture”, all of which have bemused me my entire life.