"I create my work with attention to detail, expression and a little mystery so as to draw the viewer into my world. I would describe my work as Impressionistic, inspired by flowers and gardens. I use a 3-dimensional canvas of glass to produce landscapes with a painterly effect. "
Glass artist Shawn Messenger describes her work as "gardens of glass, where you do not have to weed or water and everything grows perfectly. If you get tired of the view just turn the piece to find something new!" Shawn creates her pieces in her urban studio but her inspiration comes from her flower and vegetable gardens at her home. The details and colors of flowers have always intrigued her along with the amazement of watching something grow.
Shawn's work starts by creating a glass cane with layers of color and an interior shape of a flower. The cane is then cut into small cross sections known as murrini. The murrini are then put into floral compositions, heated and then picked up with the blow pipe on a glass background that consists of layers of powders and chips. After all of the murrini are fused to the surface a layer of clear is added and the piece is blown into it's final shape.
Shawn graduated From the Cleveland Institute of Art with a BFA in Glass. She was among the first wave of women to receive a degree in Glass from the Institute. Shawn attended the Pilchuck Glass School and studied with Dale Chihuly and Italo Scanga. Shawn also attended Penland School of Crafts studying with Richard and Jan Ritter and Dinah Hulet concentrating on the murrini.
Selected Exhibitions & Awards
Sense and Scentalbility, Tuscon AZ, Philabaum Gallery, 2009 Buyers Market of American Crafts, Philadelphia PA, Philadelphia Convention Center, 2009 ACC Baltimore Craft Show, Baltimore MD, Baltimore Convention Center, 2008 Edgewood Orchard Galleries, Fish Creek WI, Edgewood Orchard Galleries, 2008 500 Glass Objects, Asheville NC, Lark Books, 2006