CGS at The Pyramid Gallery York

CGS at the Pyramid Gallery, York
2nd May 2020 – 12th July 2020
'Life Forms'
Glass inspired by structure, form and evolution in the natural world

A selected exhibition of glass by 34 members of the Contemporary Glass Society at Pyramid Gallery, York

Opens at 11am on May 2nd 2020 and runs until 12th July

The CGS has invited its 950 UK and International members to submit for entry to their 5th exhibition at Pyramid Gallery in York, UK. From a submission of 84, the selection panel have offered the exhibition to 34 glass artists:
CAROLYN BASING, MIM BRIGHAM, ISOBEL BRUNSDON, TABITHA BURRILL, HELEN EASTHAM, DOMINIC FONDE, DOT HILL, CATHERINE HOUGH, KATERINE HUSKIE, MAX JACQUARD, NAOMI JACQUES, SUSAN KINLEY, YUKI KOKAI, RECBECCA LAISTER, MONETTE LARSEN, NICKY LAWRENCE, JON LEWIS, ROBERTA MASON, ANTHONY MCDADE, WENDY NEWHOFER, TRACY NICHOLLS, YOSHIKO OKADA, REBECCA ROWLAND-CHANDLER, HELEN SLATER-STOKES, NANCY SUTCLIFFE, ANGELA THWAITES, NOREEN TODD, ELIZABETH WELCH, FRANS WESSELMAN, SUE WOOLHOUSE, SANDRA YOUNG, MARIA ZULUETA

With the many recent protests about climate change and extinction of species, the organisers wanted to celebrate nature and natural forms, and mark the 200th anniversary of the launch of the ship ‘The Beagle’ that was to take Charles Darwin on his two year voyage to the Galapagos Islands. The ship was launched on 11 May 1820, and Darwin eventually published his seminal work, ‘On the Origin of Species’ in 1859
With the broad ranging title ‘LIFE FORMS’ this show includes a great variety of interpretations of the theme, in forms that include fused wall pieces, cast forms, pate de verre sculpture and wall pieces, blown and cold worked vessels and forms, waterjet cut glass, painted and leaded glass, fused glass bowls, engraved bowls, lampwork and mixed media sculpture.

Pyramid Gallery have a long standing reputation for showing and representing contemporary glass artists in York, which goes back to 1982, and has been working with the CGS since 2008. Gallery owner and manager Terry Brett was part of the selection panel along with glass artist Effie Burns and CGS Administrator Pam Reekie. ‘We have selected a variety of styles that represent different techniques, but with a view to how the whole show will look.’ says Terry ‘It is important to me that we include work by both high profile glass artists and those who are closer to the beginning of their career. The standard is very high, as is the imagination of the artists in interpreting the theme.

York is a centre of excellent for stained glass, so it is very appropriate that one of the centre pieces of this show is a painted and leaded glass portrait of Charles Darwin by Frans Wesselman. This beautifully made study includes three varieties of Finches that gave him the necessary data to help him formulate his evolutionary theory.

In contrast to the Darwin portrait, the plight of coral reefs is alluded to in the work by Roberta Mason. She will be showing three vessels inspired by the marine animals known as ‘Porifera’ or more commonly, ‘Sponges’. These creatures are recognised as the least evolved creatures in the animal kingdom, but also extremely numerous with about 5000 different species.
The exhibition promises to something of a visual lesson in natural science as well as treat for collectors of glass.

The exhibition opens on Saturday 2 May 2020 with a public event that will be attended by some of the artists. It is then open every day between 10am and 5pm, and Sundays between 12.30 and 4.30pm. Close to the Minster and situated on Stonegate, one of York’s busiest streets, the gallery is housed in a 600 year old building that is owned by the National Trust. The building is distinctive but small, with an overhanging first floor that is typical of mediaeval buildings in York; because of it’s small ‘sweet shop’ window, the building is easy to miss, but in the upstairs gallery a great deal of glass will be on display in a charming setting.