Project Description

George Thiewes

b. 1943, Waseca, MN

In the fields of sculpture and drawing, George Thiewes creates sharp, angular work with a focus on the interaction of light and dark.  That interest began in the 1990s while Thiewes was working on theatrical set designs, where he had to learn to create the illusion of space through lighting.  Thiewes’ sculptures are mounted on or in the wall and painted the same color as the gallery, making them hardly noticeable, except for their cast shadows.  The sculptures exist autonomously, while also defining and interacting with the surrounding space through their placement and the use of shadow.  Thiewes explores shadow as a sculptural medium; specifically how the work changes throughout the course of a day as both the natural and artificial light change in intensity, temperature, and direction.  The angles created by light and shadow give the appearance of folds, an illusion that Thiewes also investigates in his drawings.

Thiewes was born in 1943 in Minnesota.  He attended several colleges in the Midwest before receiving his BFA from Mankato State College and his MFA from the School of the Art Institute in Chicago.  After graduate school Thiewes had a successful career as a glass artist and was part of the studio glass movement of the 1960s and 1970s before turning to sculpture in the mid-1980s.  His work is included in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago; Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Chrysler Museum in Norfolk, VA; Toledo Museum of Art; Arkansas Art Center; Rochester Institute of Technology; among others.

EDUCATION
Master of Fine Arts, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Mankato State College, Mankato, MN
Studied at Art Institute of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Studied at University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Studied at St. Cloud State College, St. Cloud, MN
Studied at University of Northern Illinois, Dekalb, IL

AWARDS AND GRANTS
Penland Grant, Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts
Vermont Council on the Arts Grant Co-sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts
Arts Fellowship Grant, National Endowment for the Arts
Art Park in Buffalo, NY, Co-sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and New York State Council for the Arts

SELECTED EXHIBITIONS
2008 EVO Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2007 Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ
1982 Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, NY
1982 Glass America, Lever House, New York, NY
1982 Collector’s Choice, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York, NY
1982 American Glass Art: Evolution and Revolution, Morris Museum of Arts and Sciences, Morristown, NJ
1981 Contemporary Art Glass, New York, NY
1981 Glass Art Gallery, Toronto, Canada
1981 Works in Glass, Fox Fine Arts Center, El Paso, TX
1980 Contemporary Glass in America, Oklahoma Art Center, Oklahoma City, OK
1980 Contemporary Glass in America, Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, AR
1980 For the Tabletop, Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York, NY
1979 The Vice President’s Collection, Washington, DC
1979 Glass Veranda, Boston, MA
1977 Art of American Craftsmen, Saks Fifth Avenue, New York, NY
1975 Works Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

SELECTED BIOGRAPHY
2008 Russo, Kim, Art Envelope, “Playing in the Shadows”, Oct 10, 2008. http://artenvelope.blogspot.com/2008/10/playing-in-shadows.html
2008 Abatemarco, Michael, Pasatiempo, “Excuse me your penumbra is showing”, Sept 5-11, 2008.
2008 Sarah S King, Art in America, “Art Reviews”, March 2008
2007 Emerling, Susan, ARTnews, “Art Reviews”, pg. 209, Summer 2007.
2007 “George Thiewes: Expanding the Sculptural Field”, Exhibition Catalogue,
Phoenix Art Museum, Foreword by James K. Ballinger and Essay by Brady Roberts, 2007
2007 Pasatiempo, “No such thing as negative space”, April 13-19, 2007

SELECTED PERMANENT COLLECTIONS
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA
Chrysler Museum, Norfolk, VA
Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, OH
The Patrick Lannon Foundation, Palm Beach, FL
Fleming Museum of Art, Burlington, VT
Bergstrom-Mahler Museum of Art, Neenah, WI
Arkansas Art Center, Little Rock, AK
Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY
The Lannan Foundation, Santa Fe, NM
Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ
Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ

 

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