The Weekly Volcano, May 25, 2011
How many typos can you count in the title above? The answer is none. That's the correct title for the new show at Fulcrum Gallery, complete with the threes in place of E's and weird capitalization. And the title is about as weird as the art, which is to typical glass art what one of Lady Gaga's outfits is to a typical Sunday-go-to-meeting dress.
Featured are glass art by gallery owner Oliver Doriss (it's about time he featured his own work) and neon artist Galen McCarty Turner - including a preview of "Bike Jump" by Gaytron the Imploder (aka McCarty).
First, about "Bike Jump": On Aug. 13 there will be "a life-defying implosion of rare stimulated gasses combustigated from 90,000 volts of raditude," in the alley of Sixth Avenue and I Street. In other words, McCarty Turner will jump a bike through a wall of neon. The wall of neon, a work of art in itself, can be seen in the back gallery at Fulcrum. The front gallery features glass and neon art by McCarty Turner and Doriss.
McCarty Turner is showing a dozen glass and neon wall-mounted pieces, each on a framed panel that looks something like the mounts for taxidermy fish. His pieces are either vertical and tend to look like alters or like little men made of glass tubes and bubbles or they are horizontally oriented and look like boats or ray guns. The tubes and bubbles are filled with neon that either glows softly in vibrant pinks and violets and phosphorous blue and green or crackles like lightning. Seen as a group in the gallery setting, they look like some mad scientist's laboratory.
Doriss is showing a group of three small pieces called "Clotched City" and four larger glass vessels from his "Botanical Series."
The "Clotched City" pieces are little amber and clear glass rock formations or stalagmites inside of clear glass jar-like containers. They remind me of Superman's ice cave. These are beautiful little works of art.
His larger pieces are open vessels with very thick, transparent-to-translucent walls with the forms of ferns and leaves etched into the surface by a process involving foil sheets that are heated to leave a kind of golden residue (Doriss explained the process to me, but it was too much for my non-scientific brain). These are like jewel-encrusted rain forests encapsulated in glass.
This is definitely a show worth seeing.
through June 11, noon to 6 p.m. Thursday–Saturday and by appointment.
Special G.A.S. Open House Wednesday, June 1, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Fulcrum Gallery, 1308 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Tacoma
Latest work by CJ Swanson
See my comments on the latest works by CJ Swanson on the Weekly Volcano blog Spew.