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Indepth Arts News:

"Paul Stankard: Homage to Nature A Thirty Year Retrospective"
2002-09-20 until 2003-01-05
Fuller Museum of Art
Brockton, MA, USA United States of America

The Fuller Museum of Art is proud to present Paul Stankard: Homage to Nature - A Thirty Year Retrospective. Born and raised in Attleborough, Massachusetts, as a high school senior he moved with his family to Southern New Jersey - the home of Americaís oldest glassblowing industry. Stankard studied glassblowing technology at Salem County Vocational Technical Institute, New Jersey, from which he received a diploma in 1963. In the early 1970ís, after years in the scientific glass industry, Stankard became a full-time paperweight maker. He combines unparalleled technical skill with a broad knowledge of the natural world, flora and insects.

Stankardís lifelong interest in flora and the insect world is evident in his work. The perfection of his wildflowers, bees, damselflies and ants is spectacular. These arrangements of flowers and insects are flameworked and then encapsulated in two separate pieces of crystal glass. The realistic details are astounding, and, if not biologically perfect, organically credible. Stankard has experimented with encapsulating mosaic cane words, or murini, in his work, which began as "PS" signature canes and expanded to words as a result of his interest in poetry. The artist has been expanding his oeuvre by adding more subjective elements to the sculptural paperweights he refers to as "botanicals." Root people, male and female earth spirits, began to appear in the early 1980ís. They were created to inhabit the root systems of his botanicals, representing the physical manifestation of the spirituality of his work. Meant to be viewed from all sides, Stankardís botanicals represent a shift from traditional paperweights to sculptural glass.

There are over fifty pieces of Stankardís work on view in this thirty-year retrospective spanning his earliest single flower efforts from the 1970ís to modern complex assemblages incorporating flowers, insects and root people in a floating botanical world of both heaven and earth. Stankardís work is included in many public craft collections including the American Craft Museum, New York, NY; the Renwick Gallery of the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C. and the Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY.

On Friday, September 20, admirers of Stankardís work can receive a preview of the show and enjoy dinner with the artist. Stankard will give a demonstration of his technique at Simple Syrup Glass Studio in Brockton on Saturday, September 21 at 10 a.m. He will also conduct a lecture at the Fuller Museum at 2 p.m., with a reception immediately following from 3 to 5 p.m. Cost for the preview dinner is $90.00, and the demonstration is $30.00. Reservations are required for both of these special events. The lecture and reception are free and open to the public. For reservations and information, call 508-588-6000, ext 100.

Paul Stankard

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