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Wes Copp
Tennessee

Full Statement

Media:  Glass

Exposed
From the Depths
Outside Looking In
Tennessee Tech University Appalachian Center for Craft


These pieces represent different intensities of my soul's exposure to the outside world. This happens through visual and physical emergence of form and pattern.
I use the fluidity of hot glass to capture a moment of movement in the material. The layers of glass color manipulated into swirls represent my inner essence or soul. This pattern and the amount that I reveal show how my soul emerges from myself.
My inspiration comes from organic and natural patterns with movement in the line quality. The soft pattern juxtaposed by the hard exterior express my inner and outer being. My hard exterior can sometimes get in the way and suppress the emergence of my soul, while other times it emerges with ease.

The movement, patterns, textures, and colors of my work are inspired by the natural world. I examine the elements of the environment I live in and use those organic influences to create the elements of my aesthetic style. The swirling surface design reflects not only the soul, but also the movement of the earth. I use this inside pattern to contrast the harder cold-worked exterior.
I work the glass by using two methods; blown and solid. Manipulating the solid glass requires no interior bubble, whereas the blown glass has to be inflated from the inside to create an empty pocket of air. The color is added to the glass in multiple layers, in frit or powdered form, then manipulated to create the swirl pattern.
I stuff glass into colored cups, which covers the whole piece in glass color. The cups can be solid, or patterned; these cups can then be layered in different orders. After making the piece in the hot shop I can further manipulate and finish the pieces in the cold shop.
The cold-working lathe requires many techniques to create the differentiated textures. The wheels used to cold work are embedded with different sized diamonds depending on the desired polish for the glass. The wheels used also come in various profiles that produce different types of cuts.
Although I use many processes, the pieces are unified by the movements, patterns, textures, colors, and inspirations and coexist harmoniously like the natural world.


Glass artist inspiration: Davide Salvadore's murine patterns and forms
David Patchen's patterns and forms