June 2012 at Vetri Glass - Seattle
Exhibition Dates: June 7th - 30th, 2012
Artist Reception: First Thursday, June 7th, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
Vetri Glass - Seattle is pleased to introduce Northwest Native, Jason Christian in his first solo exhibition with the gallery. Subdued Elegance features a new body of work inspired by traditional Faberge Eggs, along with a series of the intricate reticello bowls for which the artist is best known. Christian was attracted to the challenge of interpreting Faberge’s elaborate work in metal and precious stone to the medium of hot glass. The result is a series of delicately patterned eggs and bowls that capture the Faberge spirit while bringing a contemporary sensibility to an honored tradition.
Faberge Eggs have long been regarded as masterpieces of the jeweler's art, transcending their original intention as a luxury item. Faberge felt that creativity and craftsmanship rather than carat-content should dictate the appreciation of a piece. Jason Christian has admired Faberge’s work, and the high level of technical ability needed to produce it. Christian’s interest in the egg form goes even deeper than an admiration for Faberge. The egg has been seen as a perfect, symmetrical form, pregnant with new life – it has been a symbol of rebirth for thousands of years. Christian adopts the egg as his own symbol, employing it to represent the rebirth of the time-honored craft of glass blowing and more personally, the birth of his own career in the art world.
In Subdued Elegance, Christian has set out to match Faberge’s level of craftsmanship, while creating something that is inherently his own. The works represented in this first exhibition are elegant, yet modern - the forms classically inspired, yet understated. Christian’s skill with the reticello technique (the Italian name for fishnet patterned canework with trapped air bubbles) allows him to create his delicate, beautiful surfaces. Reticello and other delicate embellishments highlighted in this body of work require an incredible amount of technical ability and showcase the artist’s dedication to craftsmanship.
Jason Christian was born in 1976 on Whidbey Island. His mother, a mixed-media artist, saw his natural desire to create and inspired him to enter the glass-blowing field. In 1997 he began working with glass, and his study of form ignited his interest in classical Venetian techniques. Christian draws his inspiration from the craft, design, and historical elements of glass making. He says, “What I produce is a melding of vision and the physical properties of glass.” Over the past 13 years he has established his professional career with notable artists including Dale Chihuly, Martin Blank, James Mongrain, Nancy Callan, David Walters, and Preston Singletary.
Contact: Susan Marabito / Director
1404 First Avenue,
Seattle WA, 98101
Image details: Faberge Egg #1 - blown glass, 20”h x 8”d, 2012
Photo: Ben Lerman