Elizabeth Swinburne's most recent body of work explores ideas
of subtle progression, growth and absence. It is important to Swinburne
that the viewer has a sense of recognition rather than exclusion.
With their first look they see 'seeds' or 'eggs' and from that starting point begins a journey in their own imaginations. The succulent forms have an organic but almost alien energy that seems almost to move.
They are familiar - reminding one of the eggs of caterpillars discovered on the underside of a leaf or of the empty cocoon of a butterfly
. Yet the works raise as many questions as they answer. What emerged from these waxy shells of fragile glass? Was it beautiful or ugly, benign or harmful?
As in earlier works it is the surface or 'skin' that is important to Elizabeth. In the past her interest was in heightening the awareness of both the physical and metaphoric moment when we meet and touch. Today it is the fragility, vulnerability and a sense of age that fascinates her.
The objects are a combination of free blown and kiln casting techniques. Elements are first blown at the furnace, then assembled in a kiln and are fired to a 'casting' temperature of around 900 degrees centigrade. This combination of glass making processes gives the final objects their fluidity and 'glassiness' which is usually only associated with molten glass.
British artist, Elizabeth Swinburne currently lives and works in Edinburgh.
She is a highly respected artist, educator and curator whose career spans 20 years.
Her work has been exhibited throughout Europe, the United States, South America and Japan and is represented in major international collections including Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Kunstmuseum, Düsseldorf; Hokkaido Museum, Japan; and the Museum of Applied Arts, Prague.
Her work was selected for the 'New Glass Review'; the international review of contemporary glass organised by the Corning Museum of Glass in 2003 and in 2006. In 2006 Tina Oldknow chose her work for inclusion in the Museum's publication: '25 years of the Corning Glass Review'. In 2005 she was awarded the Joel Philip Myers prize at the International Exhibition of Glass Kanazawa.
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