Brent Cole Taxonomy, blown glass and stainless steel, 48"x24"x6"

I enjoy utilizing many techniques and materials in creating my artwork. I find glass to be one of the more captivating materials that I use. Like memory, glass is a continual exercise of tightening up and letting go. It takes on so many characteristics, offering up many personalities to delve into.

Brent Cole, who earned his B.F.A. in glass from The Cleveland Institute of Art and his M.F.A. in sculpture from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, takes a more painterly approach to glass, seeing it as a canvas. Applying his graal interpretation, he works hot and cold, meticulously dotting enamel dust across the surface, bringing lush mountain landscapes to life. "Working in the mountains of western North Carolina provided me with endless views from which to draw inspiration," he says. As for early influences, he credits two turn-of-the-century companies—the French glass manufacturer Daum and Rookwood Pottery of Ohio—as well as the early work of Mark Peiser. Brent has been a teaching assistant for various artists at Pilchuck School and Penland School of Crafts. He has been a resident artist at the Appalachian Center for Crafts in Tennessee and the Energyxchange in North Carolina. Brent is currently the Visiting Assistant Professor in the Glass Department at the University of Miami.

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