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Christine Clark

(b Brunswick, Melbourne, Oct 10, 1928).

Australian painter and designer. With encouragement from Victor Greenhalgh, he attended evening classes at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology from 1944 to 1947. He studied from 1949 to 1951 in England, Belgium and Ireland where his interest in Celtic art increased. With the aid of a travelling scholarship in 1960–61, he studied the Eastern art of Asia, and in 1965 went to the USA on the Harkness Fellowship. His travels were often responsible for his series’ themes. Literary images and social injustices were frequently used, as in Iliad (1952), Edmund Campion series (1963), the Death of a Revolution (on South America, 1974–6), and South African-inspired works in the mid-1980s. French carefully constructed his images which are based on formal patterns and shapes, for example in Death and Transfiguration (1957; Melbourne, Joseph Brown Gal.). Using simple, easily recognizable symbols, he portrayed a powerful bluntness and honesty. After studying enamelling techniques in the 1960s, French’s paintings became known for their thick glowing layers of enamel on different textual levels, at times with gold leaf added. Apart from paintings and murals, he was known for his stained glass projects, mosaics, tapestries, etchings and lithographs. He was commissioned by the ...

Article

Geoffrey R. Edwards

(b Mildura, Victoria, Jan 30, 1927; d 1999).

Australian painter, printmaker, teacher and glass artist. He was first employed as an apprentice by the prominent stained glass firm Brooks, Robinson & Co. in Melbourne. During his ten-year association with this firm, he undertook part-time studies in painting and drawing at various Melbourne art institutes, including the Art School attached to the National Gallery of Victoria and the Technical College, and at the privately run George Bell School, which at the time presented a more progressive approach to the subject than was espoused at the larger institutes. With his training Gleeson was well-placed to investigate the innovative use of glass as a medium for artistic expression. In line with the notion of truth to material, he virtually abandoned the traditional process of staining glass in favour of a method of creating abstract compositions by overlaying, fusing and acid-etching sheets of coloured glass. Using these techniques he was able to achieve a subtle tonal range. Although Gleeson was awarded an impressive sequence of window commissions including the cycles for the Burwood Presbyterian church, Victoria (...

Article

Geoffrey R. Edwards

(b Sydney, July 6, 1950).

Australian glass artist. He studied science at the University of Sydney and in 1972 began a series of studies in glass in Australia, the USA and England. While in the USA he attended the Pilchuck School founded by Dale Chihuly and established a close association with the Pilchuck programme. His spectacular deployment of neon tubing as a floating serpentine pattern across panels of glossy, black moulded glass, brought him a number of major architectural commissions including large-scale murals for the Coal Board Building in Singleton, New South Wales, and the ANZ Bank in Melbourne. From the early 1980s Langley developed a series of idiomatic sculptural objects in which heavily textured and sandblasted slabs of fused glass are embedded with symbols and geometric emblems composed of intricate tesserae.

A. McIntyre: ‘Warren Langley Glass Works: Art of Man Gallery, Paddington, December 1978’, Craft Australia, 2 (Winter 1979), pp. 50–51 I. Bell: ‘Warren Langley’, ...

Article

Geoffrey R. Edwards

(b Hamburg, 1936).

German glass artist active in Australia. He was initially apprenticed as a glass grinder and cutter in the family glass workshop and then went on to study at the Staatliche Glasfachschule, Rheinbach, and at Hadamar, Germany. In 1960 he established a joint studio in Hamburg with his first wife, Isgard Moje-Wohlgemuth (b 1941). After 1974 he was closely associated with the Pilchuck School founded in Seattle, USA, by his colleague and friend, the American glass artist, Dale Chihuly (b 1941). In 1980 Moje went to the Canberra School of Art, Australia, where he established the Glass Workshop of which he was head from 1983.

Moje’s work continues the tradition of Roman intricate mosaic vessels of the 1st century ad. It reveals a fastidious approach to technique and can be considered as parallel, albeit on a reduced scale, to such critical mainstream movements of the modern period as colour field painting, optical art and minimalism. Indeed, there are potent elements of each of these styles in Moje’s vessels and free-standing forms, which are based, almost without exception, on dynamic fields of regular pattern rendered with a pure and resonant palette. Moje’s adaptation of the ancient process of developing mosaic patterns with tiny slices of multi-coloured glass ‘canes’ reached new heights in his most recent work, which interposes fine expanses of softly opalescent, herringbone patterns with tilting slabs of swirling, marbled colour. In Australia, Moje has been an unstinting advocate of the development of exacting kiln techniques that include fusing, casting and ...

Article

Kyla Mackenzie

(b Auckland, April 4, 1944).

New Zealand glass artist. She gained a Diploma in Fine Arts from Auckland University in 1980. Robinson pioneered cast-glass art in New Zealand when there was little support or education for glass artists. She belonged to the international development known as studio glass, in which glasswork is made in a small studio rather than a factory environment. In 1981 Robinson joined Sunbeam Glassworks, a glass-blowing studio in Auckland, where she worked alongside fellow glass pioneers Garry Nash and John Croucher until 1989.

The isolation of glass practice as an artistic field generally, particularly in New Zealand, along with lack of funding, meant that Robinson’s earliest work was arrived at through experimentation and often costly failure. In 1989, she established her own studio in Karekare on Auckland’s bush clad west coast. She had, by then, adopted the lost-wax technique for glass casting, a skill she had learnt from bronze-casting.

Vessels and their open-ended metaphors and references to Oceanic, Japanese, and ancient ritual have characterized much of her oeuvre (e.g. ...

Article

Richard Apperly

(b London, Oct 12, 1882; d Sydney, Sept 20, 1973).

English architect and teacher, active in Australia . He was apprenticed in 1900 to C. E. Kempe, a stained-glass designer, and later that year to the architect J. S. Gibson. Wilkinson studied architecture at the Royal Academy, London, from 1902 to 1906, winning the Academy’s Silver and Gold Medals and subsequently travelling in England, France, Italy and Spain. He joined the staff of the School of Architecture, University College, London, serving as an assistant professor from 1910 to 1918. He held a commission from 1914 to 1918 in the London University Officer Training Corps, and in 1918 he was appointed as Australia’s first Professor of Architecture, at the University of Sydney. Dean of the Faculty of Architecture there from 1920 to 1947, he was a witty, erudite and influential teacher, discouraging ‘fads’ and stressing the importance of correct orientation for buildings and rooms. He designed various buildings on the university campus, the Physics Building (...

Article

Geoffrey R. Edwards

(b Melbourne, 1948).

Australian glass artist . He studied architecture at the University of Melbourne and graduated in 1972. Largely self-taught in the production of glass, he was active in the development of various kiln-working techniques applied to architectural glass. Following his first exhibition of autonomous glass panels in 1976, Wright was awarded numerous church and public commissions including a vast wall of glass (1976) for the Reception Centre at the Royal Zoological Gardens in Melbourne; a set of windows (1987) for the new Parliament House in Canberra; and a window cycle (1988) for the St James’s Anglican church in Sydney. Wright’s compositions are notable for their rhythms, juxtaposed fields of loose pattern and simple, organic imagery that often alludes to the processes of germination and growth. Many of the artist’s smaller, autonomous panels are assembled from mechanically fastened sections of glass with contrasting surface treatments and textures. A series of exhibition pieces made reference to medical X-ray images and incorporated fused motifs and figures with cloudy abstract passages of chemically treated glass....

Article

Geoffrey R. Edwards

(b Berlin, March 31, 1928).

Australian glass artist of German birth. He studied design at the Master School of Arts and Crafts in Berlin and, after emigrating to Australia in 1952, studied painting, printmaking and glass at the Melbourne Institute of Technology. In 1974 he pursued further study at stained-glass workshops in Cologne, Germany, and in 1975 he studied with Patrick Reyntiens and Ludwig Schaffrath in England. In 1979 Zimmer embarked upon another period of research at the Staatliche Glasfachschule, Hadamar, Germany. Zimmer became aware of the expressive potential of contemporary stained glass while studying with William Gleeson at the Melbourne Institute of Technology. He applied his graphic and design skills to the medium of glass with such commitment and imagination that his heavily textured, expressionist panels soon became one of the most enduring influences on Australian glass artists. Zimmer produced hemispherical ‘lens’ panels by fusing layers of irregular fragments of glass. He also framed broad, boldly painted segments of glass in richly embossed lead channels, and used metallic lustre and stain-painting to decorate glass. These methods contribute to an unmistakable quality of sombre chiaroscuro which often serves to underscore the strain of passionate, socio-political narrative evident in much of Zimmer’s work. After some years as senior lecturer in glass studies at the Chisholm Institute of Technology in Melbourne, in ...