Kait Rhoads brings a BFA in glass from Rhode Island School of Design, MFA in glass from Alfred University, high level of skill, respect for traditional glass techniques, affinity for fiber based knot tying and background in painting to her beautiful glass, copper and steel Soft Sculpture series. Extremely labor intensive, the work eloquently expresses her appreciation for underwater plant and animal life.
Sideweed, 16”h x 26”w x 16”d, glass, copper and steel
Kusha, 31”h x 31”w x 8”d, glass, copper and steel
“The hexagonal shapes of the murrine interlock seamlessly; their compartments evoke the empty wax storage containers manufactured by bees and the cellular structure of coral colonies. As in the use of dots of paint in pointillism, the individual murrine can combine to form images from a distance as well.” Kait Rhoads
Stone, 10”h x 9”w x 9.5”d, glass and copper
Calyx, 14″ high x 26″ wide x 12.5″ deep
Blown glass, hollow murrine woven with copper wire on a steel stand
Red Polyp, 45″ high x 46″ wide x 19″ deep
Blown glass, mixed red hollow murrine woven with copper wire
Rhoads spent 300 hours weaving the murrine pieces in Red Polyp. You can see the process here.
“The soft sculpture and other woven pieces composed of hollow murrine are created through a labor-intensive process. Using a steel hexagon-shaped mold, I blow different colored glass bubbles and pull them out into a hollow rod shape. These rods are cooled, annealed, and then cut into small, beadlike pieces either by hand or with a diamond saw. Finally, the beads are heated in a kiln to soften their edges. This step tapers them slightly, making it easier to create a flowing curve when I weave them together with copper wire.” Kait Rhoads
Read an interview with the artist at Glass Quarterly.
Rhoads also uses the hollow murrine pieces for jewelry – you can find the glass jewelry at Facere Gallery.
Earlier work includes this dress, made of woven plate glass pieces.