I fuse used/old glass I collect from buildings, schools or else with the goal to give it a second life. Each piece is first refused at very high temperature as to erase the past and add texture. In a second step, I paint it with a unique Equine Spirit using enamels that will be fused at very high temperature (1250F)- they become permanent and will last hundreds of years, easy to wash and maintain.
Sharing the beauty and the spirit of the horse.
The Love Story
A fellow artisan friend introduced me to the glass paint one day, briefly, and right away a new love story began! I was hooked instantly, came home with a tiny jar of powder, 2 or 3 small glass sheets for experimenting... and I never stopped since! The glass painting simply conquered my heart because it allies all my passions: gesture, drawing, painting, glass and transforming glass. I just love experimenting with options and the transparency, translucency of glass, creating truly beautiful effects. Whether a black horse on a transparent background dancing in the window as a kindred spirit watching over you, a translucent fused glass sheet making a horse stand out or a mix of colours, textures, imagination and horses, mounted on a wall or hung in a window, each is unique and is magical because of the beauty of glass and its amazing qualities.
The Technique: Stained Glass Painting
The technique I use is called grisaille. It was during the Middle Ages that this process and stained glass developed as a major art. The church paintings endured until today and artists would paint on the coloured glass to add details. Since I usually follow my own journey, I apply the paint differently than the traditional way, resulting in my paintings having their uniqueness and my very own style. I also differ in my subject choices, painting almost exclusively horses (sometimes other animals when I am asked to nicely, aiming to please). Besides that the basic process is rigorously respected. The paint comes as a powder and must be mixed prior to painting including a few more ingredients like binders and medium (OK here to I made a few adaptations of my own in order to get the results I like). Until fired in a high temperature kiln the paint remains extremely fragile so I must be very cautious not to touch it in any way. Because of the transparency of the glass, I paint on a light table, adding a bit more challenges (I love challenges). Once completely dried and when I am satisfied with the result, the glass must be fired in the kiln. Temperature is controlled digitally and complex programs varying according to the desired end result will bring the glass very slowly to a high temperature (as an example 1250F and more), soak it for a required amount of time so the paint fuses with the glass and then very slowly starts the cooling process and annealing to ensure the stability of the glass. Programs are complex and critical as the glass can crack and a lot of variables can ruin the piece very easily. The process I choose prioritize safety and takes over 24 for each firing. Some pieces are fired multiple times. If I wish to have a textured piece of glass to paint on, a different kiln program is used and a unique texture is made prior to control the way the glass will end up. This is the first firing, then comes a second one for the paint, and sometimes more for painting or other objectives. Each work as it's very own processes. It may sound complex as well as risky, but it is part of the glass transformation I enjoy and sometimes surprises arise as glass thought me over the years that it definitely has a mind of its own! Before all the fun begins, each piece of recycled glass used is cautiously inspected, cleaned, sometimes cut, holes are drilled for hanging and depending on its condition it is then kiln formed to get rid of scratches and imperfections, or partially polished and cleaned again for painting.
A Second Life
Loving the earth and nature, I try to help the environment and paint on used glass. I gather used windows, door panels, sheets that are unwanted or no more needed as they are not easily recycled or even refused in our recycling facilities. It is therefore possible some sheets have what people call imperfections, I see it as life experience, and if acceptable I will make sure edges are soft and polish them if needed, and paint according to the sheet's scars giving a special addition to the artwork. If it is too damaged, I will fuse it in the kiln in various ways and each sheet comes out with its unique texture depending on how I prepare the kiln and glass.
The Value, the Heritage
These paintings will last more than a lifetime (we have proof with the church stained glass paintings in Europe). They are a true family heritage, a legacy to pass on for generations and generations.
My goal is to contribute to make the world a more beautiful and pleasant place one horse at the time! I want to share the beauty, force, sensitivity of horses in my paintings, capture their uniqueness, motion, life! I want to help you feel better at home, and enhance any room with the beauty and spirit of the horse!
Aiming to please I may create commissioned paintings to immortalize a beloved equine partner.
The Quality Control
Each painting is submitted to my committee of muses, thoroughly inspected and horse approved or send back for improvement. Just kidding! just wanted to share a large part of where my inspiration comes from! added to the countless hours devoted to anatomical, biomechanics, haute école studies, sketches, spent behind cameras and ... well let's not go there... lol! for now... This will take to long.