I have experienced Cherry Blossom events many times in my life. Some of the memorable ones are in Washington DC, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and in Japan. Once, when at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden I was looking up through the blossoming trees and I saw what appeared as black branches with a pair of Blue Jays. I took some photos and shortly after began to paint a large canvas with my interpretation of that image. Later, I decided to make bluebirds with a sky and cherry blossom design on its body to transpose the image. This piece is a reflection of the evolution of my thought process and artistic attempts to the original vision I saw in the garden in Brooklyn.
During my 50+ year career I have been fascinated with and have rendered bird imagery into my work in various forms. This focus has sharpened in the last 18 years with the blown bird series, which is based on techniques of German flameworking. I learned these techniques when I was a young apprentice, although I brought them into a contemporary context in relation to my work. I have always combined bird and human elements in my sculptures, vessel forms, and mixed media pieces. The present bird series was began after 9/11 to counter the mood and malaise of that time period. Birds have that special metaphysical and spiritual quality, which is reflected in their colors, gestures, song and flight. Plus, I love to invoke humor and character into these pieces, especially in the titles. I have also added bird prints in the medium of vitreography printed at Harvey Littleton Studios, watercolors on paper and paintings in acrylic on canvas to the mix.
Shane Fero b. 1953
Shane Fero was born in Chicago, IL in 1953 and has been a flameworker for over 50 years and maintains a studio next to Penland School in North Carolina. He participates in international symposia and conferences by lecturing and demonstrating. Fero is also an educator and has taught at institutions such at Penland School, Urban Glass, the Pratt Fine Arts Center, the Studio of the Corning Museum of Glass, the University of Michigan, Eugene Glass School, Espace Verre, Montreal, Quebec, the Pittsburgh Glass Center, Pilchuck Glass School, Bild-Werk, Frauenau, Germany, the International Glass Festival in Stourbridge, UK, Scuola Bubacco, Murano, Italy, Chameleon Studio, Tasmania, Taiwan, China, Australia, Turkey and in Seto, Osaka, and the Niijima Glass Art Center in Japan.
His work can be found in collections both private and public institutions worldwide. He has had over 33 solo exhibitions since 1992 and has participated in over 400 group exhibitions during his career. He has been honored with three retrospectives; a 30 year at the Berkowitz Gallery at the University of Michigan in 1999, a 40 year at the Huntsville Museum of Art in 2008 and at the Christian Brothers University in 2010. His work can be found in over 30 museum collections worldwide including the Museum of Art & Design NY, The Corning Museum of Glass NY, GlasMuseum, Denmark, the Asheville Art Museum, NC, the Huntsville Museum of Art, AL, the Museum fur Glaskunst, Lauscha, Germany, and the Nijiima Contemporary Glass Museum in Japan. He is the Past-President of the Board of Directors of the Glass Art Society and received the Lifetime Membership Award from GAS in Chicago in 2014, honored in 2009 for Extraordinary Contribution to the Glass Art World, Salem Community College, Carney’s Point, NJ and Award for Significant Contributions to the Chinese Glass Community from the Hejian Government, Hejian, China in 2017.