Most of my glass artwork is whimsical, capturing my enthusiasm for life and a playfulness inspired from my years of work with children. The bright colors and patterns naturally draw viewers to the work, causing passers-by to stop and look. I use bold colors, patterns and textures to create a feeling of joy in my work. Recent research on the aesthetics of joy looks at the positive effect that colors and forms can have on emotional wellbeing; there is a strong link between our surroundings and our mental health. I see this impact first hand both in the joy I get in the creation of my work and through audience responses to my sculptures.
Much of my work is non-representational with inspiration coming from the forms, colors or patterns of the beads or blown bases. Once the initial idea occurs to me, I work to create a feeling of harmony between the beads and base. I want the average person to look at and respond to the colors, patterns and shapes. For those pieces that are representational in nature, I want the concept to be recognized with ease and to elicit the audiences own memories or experiences in reaction to the work of art.
The uniqueness of my work relates directly to my personal evolution as an artist. I watched glass blowing from a young age, but my interest in light and shadow in sculpture is what eventually lead me to the medium. Starting with flame-worked jewelry, I was soon inspired to create sculptures from my beadwork. Since I approach my work primarily from the vantage point of a sculptor, assembling the pieces together using flexible wire armatures, my work has an illusion of movement or a “bounciness” that adds to the joyous mood of the work.
All of my sculptures combine several glass pieces to create one work of art, yet can each be appreciated individually for their unique patterning, color and shape. The parts represent the beauty of diversity and individuality in each of us making up the world as a whole. The world would be boring if we were all the same, as would the work of art; the diversity is what makes it interesting.
When I work with glass, I am lost in the moment, concentrating while creating beauty, and when I finish I feel rejuvenated. Through my work, I want to help others find that momentary relief in joy or that longer lasting peace and calmness that I find in creating it. In life and my work, one can reflect the difficulties we face, letting it determine our path, or like light refracting through glass, we can change the direction and give back something beautiful.