Karen Murphy Glassworks

Artist  Statement

I create site specific sculpture that is inspired by a direct response to a location or environment.

My method involves the selection and direct casting of elements of the environment, be it architectural or natural, in order to produce forms in glass that address issues of prescence and absence.

(Casting glass floorboards moulded from the original rotten wood)

By taking elements out of their original context, I preserve the existance of the artifact. Removing it from its original time line enables me to represent it in a new way, thereby memorialising it for the future. To borrow a line from Mark Dion "repackaging the past for present consumption".

(Finished glass floorboards used in the Property Ladder Project)

The resultant pieces act as a reference for the original object and carry a resonance of its past and its history.

By exploiting the transparent properties of glass, I am able to express the issues of existance and absence by visualising the space in which an object exists, either by negatively casting and creating a void that preserves a trace of the object, or by positively casting and seeing into the internal volume of the space that it occupies.

For my final degree show, I created sculptural forms from the rotten floor joists of a house. This enabled me to halt the process of decay and preserve the existance of the wood, creating a permanent record of that moment in the history of the building.

This idea of addressing the absence and presence of architectural space, acts as a metaphor, enabling me to explore issues of our own frailty and mortality, and our own vulnerability to the consequences of time.