Jamie Harris

I approach my glass sculptural work more from a painterly perspective than as a traditional glassblower. My work is about loud splashes of color, about capturing the innate way glass transmits, reflects, and absorbs color. My work is an ever-changing examination of color modulation, evoking emotional responses through visual contrast. But, more than that, my work has always had a core concern for process. What so drew me to glassblowing at the beginning was the complicated process, the quest for technique, and all of the best aspects of my work have a hidden link to that athletic dance at the furnace.

My recent work has focused on assembling manipulated solid glass elements. In my Infusion Block sculptures and wall panels, I use the Italian-trained techniques of layering and banding multiple colored bubbles of glass as a way to generate washes of sensuous, painterly color in a kiln-cast solid mass. These reinterpretations of the incalmo format track in place the flowing movement of molten glass, capturing the subtle gradation from a whisper of transparent color to a saturated intensity. I’ve invented a process to create these sculptures, beginning by creating the colored motifs as bubbles of blown glass that are transformed into masses of solid-glass, which are finally cast into blocks and carved and polished into the final shape.

My latest studio work has been a new series of original works on paper, composed from collages of acetate lighting gels. I have sketched for years with lighting gels, which are the colored plastic sheets that are used to color lights in the theater: their transparency allows me to explore the color overlap and design that I want to pursue in my glass sculptures. But over time, my sketches have become more abstracted from the final glass object, and have become drawings that capture the movement, the reflection, the warp and weave of the various color fields in the molten glass as the glass flows, stretches, and takes form. Over the last year, I have developed this new series, approaching these collages as works that share a stylistic lineage with the castings, share a connection and love of the glassblowing process that fuels the castings, and share an evolution that derives from physical cast objects, but have taken on their own presence as color abstractions on paper. The magic of transforming color in these layered collages captures the essence of the layered glassblown fields in my castings.

In addition to my studio artwork, my practice focuses on lighting design. I aim to transform my sense of color and vision into a unique sensibility. My latest designs focus on the repetition af geometric metal elements, contrasted against the fluidity of the blown glass lighting elements.

Mixed Media
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