KILN FORMED GLASS AND FIBER WORKS AT RIVER ARTS STUDIO GALLERY
Regardless of the subject or design it is technique and color that drives a work to completion. FIBER-GLASS-STEEL, the August exhibit in Chestertown River Arts studio gallery, exemplifies fine technique and stunning color in fiber art creations and kiln formed glass.
Sabra Richards has spent 50 years working in the arts and the last fifteen working with kiln formed glass.
For sculpture, tables and benches with glass and steel bases, the bases are designed first and cut for her in ¼” steel. She works with a welder to assemble them and then her work begins making all the glass herself. Sculptures can be 2 to10 feet high.
For the glass Sabra starts with sheets of Bullseye Fusible Glass. The method is very bold and direct. She chooses color, individual ones and others layered to achieve other colors. The design is created by adding and subtracting glass and most importantly adding cane and components made at the furnace, usually at the Corning Glass Museum. 16 pieces of glass are fired into a “brick” then put on the end of a long rod and heated directly in the furnace until malable. Both ends are pulled into what looks like a candy cane. After cooling Sabra takes them back to the studio and uses a saw to make slices. Adding them into the design adds richness to the work. The process is long and involved and wonderful to do, she says.
Fiber artist Joyce Murrin calls her latest work New Visions–Fused. Her designs are cut from a variety of fabrics and fused in place raw edge on a two layer base. With varying subjects in design, the constant is the technique used in their creation which may also include machine and hand sewing, paint, ink and dyeing. Print fabrics are preferred over solids which challenges the ability to balance the “weight” of the print and color with each of the other pieces being added to the design.
Among her 15 works in the show there are small cotton shapes used mosaic style, 102 zippers used as surface design and a gossamer interpretation of rain.
Understanding the inherent possibilities and limitations of various fabrics and finding inventive solutions to technical and design problems is always a challenge well rewarded, says Joyce. She has worked 35 years designing Art Quilts.
Both artists are nationally, internationally recognized and awarded whose work is represented in private, public, museum and corporate collections. Opening with artists is August 3, 11 am – 4 pm.