Elizabeth Dunlop, Glass
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“I knew how dichroic glass had been used in making colorful jewelry, but I wanted to utilize its amazing properties for larger objects. My first thoughts were I wanted to make large, jewelry-like art objects and mount them on copper. That was my artistic vision…”
Having grown up in the rustic splendor of the Sonoran Desert of Tucson, Arizona, Elizabeth Dunlop is a self-taught artist who has followed the dictates of her creative impulses since she was a child. A graduate of Northern Arizona University, she taught reading and writing to Junior High students in South Phoenix by day, but would come home and paint at night and on the weekends. Unable to quell her overwhelming urges to express herself through art, she quit her teaching job in 2008 to pursue her lifelong passion of becoming a full-time artist.
Working with a variety of artistic mediums in the early days, she became fascinated with the high-tech and unique color qualities inherent in dichroic glass – a substance created by NASA during the 1970’s for its light diffusive and thermal diverting qualities. The panoply of interspersed colors and texture effects in dichroic glass greatly appealed to Elizabeth’s creative sensibilities as a unique and appropriate material with which to express her emerging artistic voice. Dichroic’s interesting and distinctive properties allowed Elizabeth to stack the glass in many layers to achieve significant visual depth in an essentially two dimensional piece. Her work compels you to look deeply into the piece while observing the changing hues as you move across it – engaging with glass as an organic and almost living medium.
Elizabeth utilizes dichroic glass pieces to compliment the metals, wood, and other components of her creations to interplay and come together in such a way that each piece sparkles with individuality and luminescence. Much of her work is mounted on smooth steel, etched and patina metals. And she integrates her disparate materials by extending the design lines initiated within the glass, thereby creating larger format "paintings" for both commercial and residential application. Texture, form, color, and dynamism are essential components in all of her art. Each work is different and unique with its own special light, characteristics and energy.