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Jessica Loughlin’s Kiln Formed Glass: An Homage to the Observation of Light

Talking Out Your Glass podcast

Release Date: 03/01/2024

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Talking Out Your Glass podcast

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Jessica Loughlin’s work is characterized by a strict reductive sensibility and restricted use of color. Fusing kiln formed sheets of opaque and translucent glass together in flat panels or in thin, geometric compositions and vessels, she alludes to shadow, reflection and refraction. Loughlin’s work is influenced by the flat landscapes and salt lakes of South Australia, and the recurring motif of the mirage appears in much of her work. Each piece makes its own poetic statement. 

My work investigates space, seeing distance and understanding how wide-open spaces, particularly of the Australian landscape, affect us. I am fascinated by the unreachable space. The view we look upon, but can never reach. In this minimal landscape, all elements are stripped back, light becomes the landscape, and I am left looking at space, the space between here.…and there. This viewed distance is a place we can never reach, never get to, for as we move towards it, it moves away from you. Is this a real place or is it a projected space of the imagination. My work does not aim to represent this landscape directly but rather induce a state of looking inward and outward simultaneously.”  

Originally from Melbourne, Australia, Loughlin is a graduate of the Canberra School of Art under the tutelage of late Stephen Procter. Her work can be found in the permanent collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, the National Gallery of Australia, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh GB, and the Musee de Design et d’Arts Appliques Contemporains in Lausanne, Switzerland. A studio artist for over 20 years, Loughlin has exhibited both nationally and internationally. In 2020, she was only the second Australian to have work selected as a finalist in the Loewe Craft Prize. In 2018, she was awarded the Fuse Glass Prize, and in 2004 and 2007, the Tom Malone Art Prize. She is represented by Sabbia Gallery, Sydney, Australia, and Caterina Tognon, Venice, Italy.

A committed and passionate artist who is highly regarded both in Australia and internationally, Loughlin combines her thoughtful and instinctual approach with extraordinary technical skills. With a gentle color palette of soft muted hues, her work often explores ideas of evaporation, space and distance, all inherent in the Australian landscape.

Loughlin’s work was on view in late 2023 in a solo exhibition near | far at Sabbia Gallery, Sydney, and her piece of light is on national tour as part of the Jamfactory Icon series, accompanied by a monograph of her art Jessica Loughlin: from here published by Wakefield Press. In 2024, Loughlin was selected for and will participate in the Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art at the Art Gallery of South Australia, March 29 through June 2.