Stained Glass. Who knew kitsch could be so rude?

I find the stained glass technique to be the most effective medium for expressing my ideas. It is an art form and process laden with traditional associations- churches, kitsch and hobby art – and is therefore ripe for distortion. My work is largely inspired by sarcasm and contradiction: tough and fragile, spontaneous and contrived, naivety and experience. I believe these themes reveal the humor and complexity of experience and perception, and therefore become an honest representation of life.

My “fracture” sculptures capture the random, the spontaneous, and the destructive. This work is created by breaking panes of glass either underfoot, or by objects that are dropped from pulleys. The shards and broken pieces are then soldered back together, preserving the unpredictable pattern of how the glass shattered. In attempting to reconfigure the original shape of the glass, I in fact help create its altered state. Repairing the glass captures the moment when the glass was broken and for me, is a reflection of how experiences alter and shape us.

Sign is based on a traditional transom window that would be found in a residence. The pink and purple colors, bevels, and script lettering suggest a warm message, but the reality is aggressive and bold.

Sign

The Land of Golden Opportunity at first glance resembles a child-like fantasy of unicorns and rainbows, but upon closer inspection exposes a scene which could be interpreted as pornography or a wildlife television parody. It is rooted in the art of the American West, faux wood paneling, kitsch and ideas of American “Utopia”.

land-of-golden-opportunity

I am inspired by artists who dare to take intellectual, emotional and political risks. Historically, the artists I find most influential are Eva Hesse, Marcel Duchamp, John Cage, and Joseph Beuys. These artists used elements of chance, redefined the common and the everyday, broke from the established art of the day, made fun of themselves, and were aware that an individual’s actions and ideas can influence the world. Within the contemporary art world, the Chinese “cynical realists” are inspiring examples of artists who use humour to express frustration. I feel the current wave of sarcasm in the art world reflects a sense of personal political impotence and is also a reaction to Western decadence.