Saturday, February 17, 2018

Paley Exhibit Dazzles at Museum of Glass

2/16/18 Museum of Glass hot shop

Tacoma’s Museum of Glass is a beautiful (and challenging) building to sketch from the outside. The last time I tackled its shining hot shop cone was a couple of years ago with USk Tacoma. Yesterday was too cold and drizzly to sketch outdoors – a good day to stay inside the museum and the toasty hot shop.

I made one sketch of an artist working hot glass at the glory hole, but our real purpose in being at the museum was to see Complementary Contrasts: The Glass and Steel Sculptures of Albert Paley. Several years ago we saw an exhibit of Paley’s stunning metal work, so I was already a fan. This show takes his abstract, sensuous, organic work to a new level, putting glass and steel together in surprising yet fully integrated ways.

Despite the difficulty of resisting the temptation to touch, I was pleased that none of the sculptures were in cases – viewing art is so much better without a barrier. (By comparison, all of Michael Taylor’s work in the same museum was displayed behind glass, and it felt remote.) But I didn’t dare try to sketch these twisting, twining expressions of texture and form – they were better enjoyed and appreciated without attempting to capture them.

Another part of the exhibit that I appreciated was the inclusion of several proposal drawings and sketches Paley produced. It’s fascinating to see his mind at work as he imagines a piece, transfers that vision to a 2-D image, and then transforms that into a 3-D form.

Below are some of my many favorite works in the exhibit.







Proposal drawings

Sketches


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