Thursday, October 11, 6-8 p.m.
The art of glass is usually a quest for perfection. In Ron Desmett’s case, it is the imperfections that are glorified. His glass works are predominantly black and amorphous. They deny the precious enjoyment of translucent glass. Desmett is not interested in transparency or color, but rather texture, form and surface. These are glass sculptures that mock functionality.
Desmett walks through forests looking for rotten trees, searching for the contours and forms that will define his glasswork. He crafts these monumental forms by blowing into the hollowed out trunks of walnut trees, filling the void with his breath. The inflated molten glass takes on the texture of the inside of the wood mold, infusing nature with fresh life.
The artist relishes the immediacy of glassblowing. While the process feels slightly out-of-control, spontaneous and quick., Desmett makes all the relevant artistic decisions. The inherent dynamism that was present at the time of creation inhabits the artwork.
The opacity accentuates the works’ profile, volume and textured surface as the viewer looks around and not through each piece. Much like the rough and course beauty of Japanese tea bowls, Ron Desmett’s glass sculptures are a form of eccentric beauty.
Ron Desmett lives and works in Oakdale, PA with his wife and partner, Kathleen Mulcahy. For the past 30 years they have worked as independent artists on projects for installation in private glass collections, homes, corporate offices, public art projects and solo exhibitions throughout the United States. They developed and helped build the Pittsburgh Glass Center. Their collaborative work, Crossings 1982, was acquired by the Renwick Galleries at the Smithsonian Institution of Washington D.C. Desmett’s Lidded Trunk Vessel #7 was also acquired by the Renwick Galleries in 2007. In 2010, the Corning Museum of Glass acquired Lidded Trunk Vessel #22. His work is also in the collection of the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh.
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