Penny Riley-Smith - Glass In Glasshouses

Watercolour, ink, pastel, ceramic, stained glass, and textiles

Glasshouses

About

I moved to Glasshouses in 2001 looking for the peace of the countryside, and found that Nidderdale was an area rich in artists working in many different media. This suited me fine, because I have always worked in whichever media suited the subject I was working on at the time, watercolour, ink, pastel, ceramic, stained glass, and textiles.

I joined the Pateley Bridge Art Club with some trepidation, because the standard of their exhibitions was always so high, and found a welcoming community of artists to learn from. Some amazing classes at the Number Six studio gallery in Pateley Bridge freed my imagination and encouraged me to follow where the materials led.

I have developed a wanderlust in the last few years, travelling with astronomers to see solar eclipses in unexpected deserts, travelling with a group of textile artists to learn from the weavers, indigo dyers, block printers and potters of India, and coming back with my head full of rich colours and patterns which have found their way into my art.

Since March I have taken a much closer look at the local landscape and wildlife, and started on a new body of work in different media showing how important birds, plants and trees, the flow of water in the river Nidd, and the wind in the grasses can be in overcoming the restrictions we have been facing.

Penny Riley-Smith

Penny Riley-Smith - Glass In Glasshouses

Watercolour, ink, pastel, ceramic, stained glass, and textiles

Glasshouses

About

I moved to Glasshouses in 2001 looking for the peace of the countryside, and found that Nidderdale was an area rich in artists working in many different media. This suited me fine, because I have always worked in whichever media suited the subject I was working on at the time, watercolour, ink, pastel, ceramic, stained glass, and textiles.

I joined the Pateley Bridge Art Club with some trepidation, because the standard of their exhibitions was always so high, and found a welcoming community of artists to learn from. Some amazing classes at the Number Six studio gallery in Pateley Bridge freed my imagination and encouraged me to follow where the materials led.

I have developed a wanderlust in the last few years, travelling with astronomers to see solar eclipses in unexpected deserts, travelling with a group of textile artists to learn from the weavers, indigo dyers, block printers and potters of India, and coming back with my head full of rich colours and patterns which have found their way into my art.

Since March I have taken a much closer look at the local landscape and wildlife, and started on a new body of work in different media showing how important birds, plants and trees, the flow of water in the river Nidd, and the wind in the grasses can be in overcoming the restrictions we have been facing.

Penny Riley-Smith

My work

About my work

I am working more and more in glass, using its rich colours and effects to express the light and colours of the local area. There is nothing to beat the excitement of opening the kiln as it cools, to see how this tricky material has adapted itself to the idea in my mind.

My current challenge is to find new ways of showing movement in birds. Watching the skies, different bird species each have their own way of moving through the air, soaring, hovering, darting or flying in screaming parties as the swifts do.

There are many different ways to work creatively with glass. Stained glass makers cut and enclose coloured glass in lead or solder to join them together to make an image. Torch workers use a propane torch to melt glass rods into beads and other small shapes. Glass blowers such as Sanders and Wallace dip into molten glass, blow and form it, and add powdered colours.

I mainly use kiln-fired glass, cutting sheets of coloured or clear glass, transparent or opal, then layering and piecing them together and using the heat of the kiln to fuse them together. The brittle, sharp glass melts, the edges soften, and the colours blend together. Held up to the light, the results can be truly glorious.

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Contact

Studio:
  • You need to see my glass for yourself to take in its rich colour and transparency. In September please contact me to arrange a visit.
Buy my work at:
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