Page 1

2016 SAXE



Cover details (L-R): Ito Laïla Le François, La mort aux champs, photo by Nicolas Martel / Wil Sideman, Apple Knocker / James Labold, Martyrs of Will and of Deed: JFK Catalogue designed by Kristin Galioto

ABOUT Each year the Glass Art Society selects three emerging artists to present lectures at its annual conference. Through these lectures, artists with promising talent are afforded the opportunity to introduce their work to a large audience of established artists, educators, peers, collectors, art historians, and critics. Educators and museum curators are asked to nominate individuals who meet the criteria listed below. • • • •

An emerging artist using glass as their primary medium Not currently enrolled in a training or education program (including MFA or PhD) Have 5 years or less of professional experience since graduating from study or training program Not currently scheduled to be, or have not been, a presenter (lecture or demo) at a GAS conference

Nominees are contacted and requested to submit applications. A jury of professionals reviews all applications and determines the presenters for the upcoming conference. About the Saxe Emerging Artists Lecture Fund At the 2015 GAS conference, the Glass Art Society honored collectors Dorothy and the late George Saxe with a tribute event, which helped to create an endowment for the Saxe Emerging Artists Lecture Fund. This fund is designed to support future generations of glass artists. Donations can be made online at


Jame Labold Muncie, IN

Ito Laïla Le François Québec, Canada

Wil Eldridge Sideman Boston, MA

JAMES LABOLD I make work using glass and mixed media influenced by contemporary American political culture, its development through history, and its relation to global society. I’m interested in the connections between mythology and patriotism in the present and the past. My childhood was spent frequenting Revolutionary War era historical sites and personal politics have driven me to continue these explorations. Drawing on sources ranging from mysticism to Postmodern theory and psychoanalysis, I create a body of work comprised of traditional sculptural objects and installation-­based work with a focus on the properties of glass and neon. I use Americana as both inspiration and raw material in the form of found objects. I transform these objects through direct manipulation or by molding them, then creating assemblages which are ultimately formed in glass. By manipulating and distorting my materials, I explore the way in which history can change over time as modern perspectives continually reinterpret events of the past. I have looked to architecture as a point of departure for explorations of power and structure, both physical and political. The use of Neoclassical architecture in the early American republic was a very intentional decision meant to draw connections to ancient Rome’s republican virtues, ironically America could be viewed as now following Rome’s path toward empire. My work attempts to decode the underlying origins and meanings of national symbols, while also recontextualizing them into contemporary icons and sacred spaces imagined as the setting for contemporary initiates in the secret cult of the American Civil Religion.

Right: Divisive Ruling, 2015, blown glass, mixed media, 6” x 12” x 25”

Martyrs of Will and of Deed: Lincoln, 2015, blown glass, mixed media, 6” x 6” x 31”

Capitol Endowment 2015 Cast glass, mixed media 27” x 8” x 8”

Space Race Martyr #2 2015 Blown glass, mixed media 10” x 8” x 6”

Monumental Failure (detail) 2015 Blown glass, neon, wood, plaster, found objects 1’ x1’ x 10’ Photo: John Candelaria

Eye in the Sky 2015 Neon, OSB, Plexiglas, insulation foam 48” x 30” x 8” Photo: John Candelaria

The Myth is Real, Mystic Truths of American Exceptionalism, installation view 2015 Mold blown, kiln cast, and hot sculpted glass, neon tubing, OSB, wood, plaster, insulation foam, security mirrors, found objects Dimensions variable Photo: John Candelaria

ITO LAÏLA LE FRANÇOIS Survival and the wild are my forgotten nature. I demand to regain: what belongs to me, what has been lost. Instinctively, metaphors reveal themselves. A quest for identity guides me through exploratory journeys. I feed from origins lost and primitive knowledge that is fading. In this living moment, territory, violence and the obsession with the body govern me while the human incongruity touches me deeply. I want to dig out my innards, delve through crumbs of ancestral knowledge… what’s left of it. I have a visceral hunger for liberty: to be me, human and animal. In my creations, anatomy is revealed while the cycle of life and death takes shape. Landscapes, bones, muscles and rivers become muddled; I sunder, accumulate, duplicate and distort figures to give them might. Listening to intuition, I sculpt natural matters for their symbolic meaning. My work is comprised of a plethora of mediums: glass, wood, ceramic, metals, skin, textiles… In spite of me, sensuality and softness prevail. My sculptures seem fallen right out of a dream of poetic narration. I strive to be an anachronism in the middle of the civilized, to hound my nature and feed that of others.

Left: La Malcommode (work in progress), coyote fur, glass, felt, stone, hair, copper, 2016, 4’ x 5’ x 3’, Photo: Boris Plique

Meurs et reviens 2013 Glass, wood, steel, clay Installation: 96” x 78” x 78”

L’Élégance de Charles 2015 Clay, glass, felt, steel 34” x 30” x 18”

Je vais manger vos enfants, 2015, clay, glass, wood, fur, epoxy, 63” x 60” x 49”

Caller le caribou 2013 Glass, wood, fur, stone 4.5’ x 8’ x 4’ Photo: Michel Dubreuil

La Malcommode (work in progress) 2016 Coyote fur, glass, felt, stone, hair, copper 4’ x 5’ x 3’ Photo: Boris Plique

Elle s’est fait décarcasser en sortant du ventre de sa mère 2012 Wood, glass, steel Installation 8’ x 6’ x 4’ Photo: Michel Dubreuil

WIL ELDRIDGE SIDEMAN My work is routed in narrative, the ability to represent stories or events through the objects and scenarios I create. Through on-site research and studio experimentation I explore ideas about family, self-identity and geographical location, and how these universal concepts effect personal and community development. I am intrigued by the human inclination to obtain objects. Our family, location and lifestyle all play into the objects we interact with and collect. Through this interaction objects become imbued with a level of importance often exceeding beyond their material value. These specific items are recognized, coveted and potentially handed down through generations. I see these objects as narrative, engrained with memories and stories of their own. In the same way an object gains importance over time, this also is true for place. A seemingly common or mundane location can represent the most important region to an individual, family or community. All of these concepts rotate around ideas concerning time. The passage of time, the fickleness of time, the concept of the temporal, these ideas draw a line through the work I create, often connecting one body to the next. The work generated from these concepts begins and records its own historical fiction, referencing factual information as well as romanticized memories. Filtered through my own aesthetics and personal outlook, the work and scenarios I focus on function as permanent placeholders for memories and stories that may otherwise be left uncelebrated.

Right: What’s Left Behind, 2013, blown glass, evaporated salt water, 4’ x 3‘ x 16”

Piscatoribus Sacrum 2012 Blown glass, flameworked handle, steel, wood 10” x 10” x 18”

Joined 2011 Kiln cast glass with carved wood 3’ x 6” x 4’

Raft For Ed 2012 Kiln cast glass, cold assembled, paper inclusions 15” x 4” x 5’

Stories Untold 2013 Kiln cast glass, milk paint 6” x 2” x 6.5’

Salted Oak 2012 Carved glass with wood 6’ x 2” x 4’

Bottles For Bidder 2014 Blown Glass 18” x 16” x 4”

JURORS OSAMU NODA Osamu Noda grew up on the island of Niijima in Tokyo. He received his BFA in glass from Tama Art University and studied under Joel P. Myers at Illinois State University, where he earned his MA in glass. Noda taught summer workshops at Pilchuck Glass School from 1981 to 1984, and he currently serves as a member of the international committee. After returning to his home island in 1987, Noda became the founder and director of the Niijima Glass Art Center, supported by the Niijima Local Office. He has been a student, a teacher, a juror, and a workshop instructor at many institutions and communities internationally for over 30 years in Japan, the US, and Korea.

JUROR COMMENTS I chose and selected three of the best emerging artists by considering how much passion for glass or time they [spent] to create their works, not only using just a material as an element, but also having their own stories of technique or process to represent their concept.

JEFF ZIMMER Jeff Zimmer trained in theatre in his hometown, Washington, DC, before moving to Scotland. His work explores sensualities of ambiguity and light, and often centers around themes such as moral survival in imperfect worlds. He teaches internationally and at the University of Edinburgh. He won Second Prize at the 2014 Coburg Prize and was the 2014 Stephen Procter Fellow at the Australian National University. His work is in the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum (UK), the European Museum of Modern Glass/ Veste Coburg (DE), the Glasmuseet Ebeltoft (DK) the Glasmuseum Frauenau (DE), and North Lands Creative Glass (UK).

JUROR COMMENTS The ecumenical approach to working with glass among this year’s entrants, its techniques and expressive potential, was impressive. I’m pleased that our three winners display a diversity of aesthetic, from the carnal to the cool to the kitsch. A strong notion of time seems to weave through these artists’ practice. Ito Laïla Le François stops time to confront us with the beautiful horror of the transition between our bodies being our own, to their absorption back into the ecosystem. Wil Sideman presents ordinary objects that have the potential to become imbued with meaning simply by the passing of time and through real or fictionalised associations. James Labold takes those same ideas and uses them to explore the mythologies and icons of the United States. Though our winners are certainly worthy of being selected, the wealth of talent and skill displayed by so many of the other entrants reflects an exciting generation who are interested in glass as a material, as an experience, as a medium for play, and as part of a living tradition, as familiar and alien. I wish you could all see what we’ve seen – and trust we’ll all be seeing a lot more of these emerging makers.

6512 23rd Ave NW, Suite 329 Seattle, WA 98117 T: 206.382.1305 E:

Profile for Glass Art Society

2016 Saxe Emerging Artists Catalogue  

Three emerging artists were selected to make presentations at the 2016 GAS conference in Corning, NY.

2016 Saxe Emerging Artists Catalogue  

Three emerging artists were selected to make presentations at the 2016 GAS conference in Corning, NY.