|From a Distance, Photo by Owen Murphy|
Inspired by views of the Crescent City and the rural Wisconsin landscapes of his youth, Tulane University glass professor Gene Koss has crafted sculptures from cast-glass forms and found or fabricated steel for his latest exhibition at Arthur Roger Gallery in New Orleans.
With sculptures ranging from small-scale pedestal works of glass, steel and found objects, to monumental pieces, some weighing several tons, the exhibit “From a Distance” will be on view through Feb. 27 at the gallery, 432 Julia St.
“My goal has been to make glass fine art, not craft,” Koss says. “I use glass as a medium of pure sculptural expression resulting in monumental sculptures of cast glass, steel and light.”
The signature sculpture titled From a Distance was inspired “by this city I’ve loved for 40 years,” says Koss, who travels frequently across the Crescent City Connection bridge from his studio in Plaquemines Parish.
“The view of the city from the bridge is amazing and inspirational — the architecture, the movement of the water in the river, the way the light reflects off the buildings, the ships and barges traveling up and down the Mississippi,” he says. “The cantilever of the sculpture addresses the precarious feeling of being suspended over the river.”
Koss leads the glass program in the Newcomb Art Department and is teaching courses to both undergraduate and graduate students this semester. This video shows Koss and students at work in the Pace-Willson Glass Studio.
His work has been exhibited at the New Orleans Museum of Art; the Contemporary Arts Center of New Orleans; the Masur Museum of Art in Monroe, Louisiana; the Sculpture Center in New York City; and the International Biennale for Contemporary Art in Florence, Italy. His work is in many prominent collections including the Pan American Life Collection in New Orleans and the Corning Museum of Glass in New York.
[Tulane New Wave, January 8, 2016]