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Artist of the Month
December 2010

Artist of the Month

Michael Glancy

Elegant and exceptional in their quality and beauty, Glancy’s sculptures reveal the artist’s exacting struggle towards perfection. Drawing inspiration from microscopic landscapes, Glancy translates cellular structure into elegant sculptural objects. The grid lines etched into the glass vessels and base plates suggest latitude and longitude, while the organic and undulating vessels allude to topography. Glancy’s algebraic artistry explores the vertical form in relation to a horizontal plane.

Michael Glancy

Artist of the Month

About Michael Glancy

Michael Glancy was born in 1950 in Detroit, Michigan. He has been the recipient of numerous awards including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and has lectured extensively in the U.S. and abroad. Mr. Glancy received a B.F.A. from the University of Denver in 1973 and went on to study with Dale Chihuly at the Rhode Island School of Design where he earned an additional B.F.A. and an M.F.A. Mr. Glancy is currently an adjunct faculty member of the metals department at RISD.

Barry Friedman Ltd will present a major solo exhibition of more than 35 new works by Michael Glancy beginning May 5, 2011. This will be the artist’s first solo exhibition in five years. A large hardcover book covering Glancy's work over the past 15 years will accompany the exhibition. 

Mr. Glancy’s work is represented in many public and private collections including Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; Corning Museum of Glass, NY; Detroit Institute of Arts, MI; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Renwick Gallery, Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia Museum of Art, PA; Glasmuseum, Ebeltoft, Denmark; Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris; Museum of Contemporary Art, Hokkaido, Japan; Victoria & Albert Museum, London, among others.

Curator of Contemporary Art at the Los Angeles County Museum, Howard N. Fox, has written, “Michael Glancy would not be properly described as a conceptual artist, but his intricately materialist art is centered in scientific and philosophical concepts, as evidenced by references in the titles of his works to biology, molecular physics, astronomical bodies, relativity, mathematics, and infinitude. The works themselves incorporate blown and plate glass, copper, bronze, silver and gold, and on occasion stone, such as black granite. He fuses these materials in a process known as electroforming, in which a high-voltage charge is passed through them. The strongly transformative process, together with his scientific interests, seems to position his creations within the practice of alchemy at the intersection of physics and metaphysics as much as in the domain of art. The forms he creates possess an ineffable, cosmic aura. In the poetry of Glancy’s art there is always the impression of a momentous cosmological event or potential, perhaps the moment before the Creation or the Big Bang.”

Critic William Warmus explains, “Michael Glancy magnifies nature in order to reveal its underlying structure. He uses electron microscopes to inspect the eyes of insects; geology inspires him with its stratifications and crystallizations; and the vortex of randomness and chaos theory not only fails to intimidate him, but provides a template for much of his work. Glancy’s two-dimensional sketches contain his musings on all of these matters, and he has found that sketching on glass is best suited to his ambitions. These become the flat glass panels that form sculptural bases for his artworks, and their structures unfold into and inspire the vessels that sit astride them. It is as if the two-dimensional universe had unfolded and warped itself into three dimensions.”

Acknowledgment of Gallery:
We are grateful to Barry Friedman Ltd. (New York) for providing the materials for the Artist of the Month.

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The Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to further the development and appreciation of art made from glass.

The Alliance informs collectors, critics and curators by encouraging and supporting museum exhibitions, university glass departments and specialized teaching programs, regional collector groups, visits to private collections, and public seminars.