I am excited about a connection I have made here in California with a local environmental organization, Napa Vision 2050. They exist to preserve local values and to protect our water resources, forests, rural communities, agriculture and open space. Now they will receive a $5 donation from each sale of my new fused glass panels!
I am grateful to be connected to a cause that contributes to the greater good of my community. I am a studio artist. I become more balanced by spending time in my studio for contemplation and the creative process. I refuse to be isolated and removed from the world, however. These small nests are a simple act that allows me to connect, contribute, reach out, stay educated, work toward something I believe in.
In these times that are confusing, disheartening and fearful, I have decided to act more intentionally and make choices that I believe in. I believe in teaching my children to be kind and accepting of diverse peoples and cultures. I believe in striving for a clean natural world. I believe in working toward the change I desire for myself, friends and children.
I was inspired to make these small panels because I wanted to make something comforting and calm. I wanted to build in a spontaneous way and focus my attention on a peaceful image. These were the results! Various images of bird’s nests in tree branches! These small glass panels are 4 inches x 4 inches, and can hang by suction cup (provided) in the window, or by nail in the wall. They are handmade by me, and are $45. The intention is to make them affordable for gifts, so the designs are repeated, with slight variation. They are fused glass which means they are melted in the kiln. They come with a colored bamboo fiber cord and brass ring for hanging. And as I mentioned, $5 from each sale goes to preserving our natural world! Interested in having a nest for your home? See all designs available: Click here
I am excited about these! They are small (4 inch square) fused glass panels to hang in a window or against a wall. They are spontaneous and sweet. They are secured with a silk cord and brass ring. They are repeats to keep cost down. They are the perfect gift, the perfect home cosy addition. They are $45 to allow for ease of pocketbook. A portion of each sale is donated to a local environmental group. They are for sale at my etsy online store.
The last time I went to Burning Man was in 2002. I went with my close friend Anna Erlewine. We drove there from Wisconsin. We swam in rivers. We ate ramen. We thought we saw a mountain lion. We spent 10 days in the salt flats. We helped build the temple. We rode on double decker art cars and borrowed motorcycles. We slept in a tent I made out of canvas and maple saplings. It was a circus type tent with circular windows and a skylight. We wore boots. We wore cowboy hats. We painted our skin. We watched things burn. We drank watery beer and our hair felt like wigs from the salty sandy land. The art that erupted from the land and human hands was spectacular. And watching the city build itself up during the days we were there was incredible. And sitting way out in the darkness of night and looking back at the lights was soothing. A city of art and music created in the middle of flat, wild land and dark night skies. Wow.
Quill Hyde made these amazing horses (Acavallo Art Installation for Burning Man) out of steel that people could sit on. I made stained glass for one of the horses. I used bottles and lenses, and mirror from the 60s. The cheeks had fire bursts. What an honor to be included in this project!
I made these jewelry display cases for Donna Karan’s Urban Zen store in Hollywood. I used brass framing which I changed black with a patina. They are simple, strong and earthy stylish. They are not my design, but I am still excited about working with this store!
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALEXA GRAY
In 2006, I lived in New York. I had the great opportunity to build a commission for Deity Nightclub in Brooklyn. They wanted goddesses with an element of erotica. The windows were 4 feet by 6 feet and there were 6 of them. The owners agreed on the drawings and said, “You don’t have to run all the glass samples by me. Just do what you want.” This was a dream commission.
The goddesses I chose were “Shekinah- Jewish goddess Tree of Life” and “Nut- Egyptian Goddess of the Night Sky.” (pronounced Noot) Shekinah is portrayed as young, with braids in her hair. She is also an element of the land, and rooted. Shekinah has a green flame on her forehead, a kind of third eye. The tree extends to each side of Shekinah.
Nut is portrayed as older with gray dreadlocks and reclining on the clouds. She is an element of the sky and boundless. The stars are opaque and reflect off their surface. They have a sparkle with interior lights, and a metallic finish. There are clouds that extend on each side of Nut.
This window was installed in a burnt-out and abandoned building in Portland, OR in 2008. I used some of the salvaged glass from the burnt out building. The glass was melted by the fire, covered in graffiti, and broken. I also used french mouth blown glass- the pinks and red. I wanted to combine dirty, discarded glass with the finest and most expensive glass, to show the value and interest in each. I installed it, and it lasted several weeks before someone uninstalled it for their own home. (which was a fine outcome for me).
It was fun to put stained glass in a completely unexpected location, and highlight the decaying beauty of a building like this. I love the sunlight on the broken safety glass panels. Directly inspired by graffiti artists, it was an act of sharing my work with passersby. An urban surprise art element. A softness of colored light and attention to life giving qualities in contrast to cement and decay and barbed wire. I am so appreciative of urban places- the diversity of ideas and peoples. I am also appreciative of the quiet places in a city. These are quite often the decaying building neighborhoods- Warehouses, vacant lots. Of course, I love urban parks and woods, too. Both have their calm.
The image on the glass is the word “Bolt” surrounded but two lightning bolts. Then there is a suitcase with a rocketship on it. (another concept of bolt- getting out of town). It is a very scrappy piece. The suitcase is made using the graffiti spray painted glass pieces. The arch above the suitcase is the burnt and melted glass.
I found this t.v. on the side of the street in Brooklyn, NY. It was gross. But it was the exact look I had been keeping an eye out for, so it was worth cleaning. The pattern on the t.v. is your everyday chain link fence. Participation? Observation? Engagement? Off limits?
I made this piece using hundreds of salvaged lenses. When positioned against a landscape (featured here in front of New York Bay), the horizon line splits. No longer a steady, straight, constant, resting place, the horizon line becomes activated and splayed.
This lens sculpture lived in front of my front window for a long time. It was amazing to see a bird fly by, become a flock, and fly solo out the other side. This piece really energized whatever I was looking at.
Stained glass for the east bay.
This red tail hawk window is a memory from my time in NY.
I was walking down a small dirt path in Prospect Park, when a huge red tail hawk swooped over my head carrying a beefy rat in its talons. It was a victory for nature in that bustling city. It was a relief, exciting. It was a reminder that nature is there, tucked in the treetops of the city park. Wild and powerful.
So, for years I had that image in my head and finally was able to build it. So, that little animal in the hawks talons is a rat, though some have said an armadillo. And I’m fine with that too.