Featured Artist Alice Shepherd

Self-taught glass artist Alice E. Shepherd creates fascinating glass and industrial sculpture using reclaimed materials. See more of her work by visiting her website.

 

“Assimilation #1” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 16” x 23” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Assimilation #1” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 16” x 23”

 

“I want to be a mechanic.” My declaration was met with an immediate and definite response, “Absolutely not, young lady!”

 

“Assimilation #2” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 18” x 24” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Assimilation #2” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 18” x 24”

 

I am Alice the third, born on my grandmother’s birthday, and creating is in my DNA.

 

“Synthesis #1” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 7.5” x 21” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Synthesis #1” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 7.5” x 21”

 

A native Nashvillian, I was raised by a crafty stock of make-do women and self-made men—mechanics, machinists and builders all who knew the meaning of hard labor. Raised an only child, I hung around them and learned the value of our resources—self-sufficiency and creative problem solving. Recycling and reuse were a necessary way of life. When something broke, we fixed it. If we couldn’t fix it, we found another use for it.

 

“Lock Down” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 6” x 17.5” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Lock Down” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 6” x 17.5”

 

My play time was helping in the driveways, book binderies and garages among the machinery, fetching tools and identifying parts. I developed a deep affinity with these things beyond their intended use.

 

“Changing Gears” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 8” x 20” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Changing Gears” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 8” x 20”

 

As a young woman I got an office job and married a man in industrial sales. But I was still drawn to that world and would often go to his warehouse to gather cast-off parts, imagining them in new ways, assembling them into wall hangings.

 

Industrial Parts and Glass Slag by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

Industrial Parts and Glass Slag

 

Then, in 2007, something happened that changed the course of my life. I found myself captivated by a raw, gorgeous chunk of windshield glass slag that sparked my journey to becoming a kiln formed glass artist.

 

“Trans-Mission” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 17.5” x 19” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Trans-Mission” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 17.5” x 19”

 

Intrigued, I bought my first kiln and began my relationship with glass. This unique material that is neither solid nor liquid, whose molecular structure changes with every firing yet retains the details of each, that can be smooth or textured, flat or wavy, woven, draped, that can record images—had captured my fascination!

 

“Uprising” Kiln-Formed Glass and Rotating Industrial Parts, 9” x 11.5” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Uprising” Kiln-Formed Glass and Rotating Industrial Parts, 9” x 11.5”

 

In 2011, I left office work and started Artwork Cubed full-time. My life is my work is my art and my latest collection brings my story full circle, back to my roots. Look closely and you’ll see ghost images and fragments of my life—wrenches, gears, washers, bolts—memories intertwined in glass and metal.

 

Artist Alice Shepherd in her studio. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

Artist Alice Shepherd in her studio

 

Now, I have my own glass shop where I carry on our traditions in my own way. Working with head, hands and heart connects all the parts of me and me to them. To paraphrase Norman Rockwell, “I sometimes think we (create) to fulfill ourselves and our lives, to supply the things we want and don’t have.” And sometimes those things are intangible, like being a part of something meaningful and enduring.

 

“Radiate” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 15” x 15” by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Radiate” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts, 15” x 15”

 

The whole is indeed greater than the sum of its parts! I am grateful for the opportunities to share my work through Artsy Shark, in Nashville Arts Magazine (June 2018), in juried exhibits, and to have it selected for private and permanent collections including that of the Metropolitan Nashville Airport.

 

“Grace Under Pressure” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts by artist Alice Shepherd. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Grace Under Pressure” Kiln-Formed Glass and Industrial Parts

 

I plan to continue creating similar, larger and more conceptual works and would love to explore gallery relationships, placing this work in public, corporate and residential spaces. I welcome inquiries for custom projects!

 

Artist Alice Shepherd invites you to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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