Joanna Manousis, Demeter II, USA, 2017

Joanna Manousis, Demeter II, USA, 2017

Joanna Manousis, Demeter II, USA, 2017

Demeter II takes on the formation of an oculus window, commonly found in churches of the gothic architectural style. Rather than infiltrating light into a sacred space, Demeter II refracts light to its viewer. The clear crystal segments act as apertures for the residual details of wheat and seed-like formations that lie within. Here, both the wheel and the wheat pay homage to the ever-flowing cycle of life and death, a rhythm that is embodied in Demeter, the Greek goddess of the harvest. For centuries, the ‘wheel window’ has been used as a symbol of spirituality and that which is infinite: the universe or the cosmos. Demeter II is stripped of the color and grandiose iconography usually presented in church windows to deliver what is essential and unifying to us all.

Demeter II is cast in glass and crystal using ‘core-casting’ techniques. The negative spaces within the glass are formed by creating a series of rubber ‘mother’ molds. In Demeter II, wheat and seedpod formations are sculpted in clay for the initial mother molds. Rubber ‘mother’ molds create a refractory (heat resistant) duplicate of the core and mold. It is these molds that are fired in the kiln. Glass melts into the mold but cannot penetrate where the ‘core’ is positioned. This then reveals a negative space when the refractory is extracted from the glass upon cooling.

The glass components are hand polished to a peak shine by hand.

Manousis has earned numerous internationall awards and  nominations for her work, including a Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Nomination in 2017, The Margaret M. Mead Award through the Burchfield-Penney Arts Center in 2011, the Hans Godo Frabel Award for ‘Outstanding Achievement in Glass’ in 2010, and a Bombay Sapphire Award nomination for ‘Excellence in Glass’ in 2008. Manousis has created her work within major public museums and studio residency programs, including The Toledo Museum of Art, OH, The Museum of Art and Design, NY, The Corning Museum of Glass, NY, and Cité Internationale des Arts, France. Her work has been exhibited internationally at institutions and art fairs including The Glasmuseet Ebeltoft, Denmark, The British Glass Biennale, UK, Salon Art + Design, NY and FOG Art + Design, San Franscisco. Holding a Masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Alfred University, New York, and a First Class Honors Bachelor Degree in Fine Art from The University of Wolverhampton, England, Manousis has worked, studied and taught in Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia.

Materials: Cast Crystal / Aluminum

Dimensions: 33.50h x 33.50w x 3.50d in


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