Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret
among contemporary American writers. --John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture Marly Youmans is a novelist and poet out of sync with the times
but in tune with the ages. --First Things

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Glass for Palm Sunday

Robert Stephan is a glassman born in California but now resident in Western North Carolina--a great place for arts and traditional crafts. The pieces shown below were part of a show at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina Glass 2012 (the pictures snapped with my little pocket Canon.) In graduate school, he worked with Kent Ipsen; earlier he taught himself the basics of how to work with hot glass "with a furnace I constructed out of an old 55-gallon steel drum." His sculptures are in collections at the Corning Museum of Glass, the Mint Museum, the Chrysler Museum, and others.

At the Blue Spiral 1 gallery site, his work is described this way: "Robert Stephan’s glass sculptures illustrate the infinite possibilities that light, transparency, and iridescence can be used to create vivid color and subtle texture. Stephan’s glass encompasses a variety of techniques including the application of high-tech optical filter coatings. These are added to the surfaces and/or interiors of his blown, carved and laminated glass sculptures. The coatings produce color shifts where one color is reflected and another transmitted."

I thought Robert Stephan a good choice for the day because of his stance toward his art. In the catalogue to the show, he describes his goals: "It's my desire to involve the viewer in exploring the interior/exterior design. I see the chromatics and configurations as a reflection of a redeemed creation with its order and vibrant energy, from God who thought it good to give beauty to humanity."


  1. Magically beautiful!

  2. They are rather kaleidoscopic, in that peering into them never seems the same twice--always a different magic.

  3. A positively garden splendor, zephyr! The riot of color...

  4. Really beautiful! Thanks for the introduction.

  5. They are gorgeous! Thank you so much for bringing his work to our attention.

  6. Hi marja-leena,

    Glad you liked! And I have some other pictures that feel kindred to your own art that I will put up some time soon.


    You could pop into his studio when you go west! And he seems to have a lot of pieces at Blue Spiral. I'll bet he might have a few pieces in the Triangle.

  7. Hypnotic! And Rebecca seems to have fallen into the spell.

  8. They are indeed alluring and a pleasure to stare at for a long time...


Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.