Today I am welcoming guest blogger, Jacob Robinson of Classic Glass, Inc..
I recently started reading the Classic Glass blog and fell in love with the beautiful triptych that Classic Glass created for Chincoteague Hall at the University of Maryland in College Park Maryland. I asked Jacob if he allow me to re-blog his original publication and he graciously agreed.
Printed Glass Triptych – UMD – Chincoteague Hall
How do you take a 20×16 inch multi-layered ink drawing on semi-transparent vellum paper and turn it into an 8×7 foot glass art triptych? Classic Glass undertook this challenge and produced an impressive printed glass triptych that serves as the finishing touch on the $7 million renovation of the University of Maryland’s Chincoteague Hall in College Park, Maryland.
Beginning in July 2010, the university’s project manager, architect Mary Ossi oversaw the 22,648-square foot renovation of Chincoteague Hall. The university chose to feature a former student’s original artwork, Ruth Bowler’s “Overlap,” which received first prize for two dimensional art in the 2002 Sadat Art for Peace Competition. In describing her piece, Bowler explains, “When I think of peace, I am unconsciously drawn to a distinct space. I call this space overlap. It is the moment after we realize each other’s differences and the moment before we decide what to do with them. In this fluid, negotiable space, the possibility of peace exists.”
Classic Glass’s challenge began with determining how to best capture the spirit of Bowler’s art while accurately depicting the semi-transparent piece against a stone wall backdrop. Over several months, a variety of samples were developed and taken to Chincoteague Hall as Classic Glass moved closer to an optimal solution. Original plans to etch the design proved ineffective in creating enough contrast to the stone wall. Carving the glass and infilling the design with paint also proved to be impractical as the complexity of the layered elements and interacting lines could not be achieved in a “clean” manner. Finally, because of the precise control of the technique, Classic Glass determined that glass printing would create a high visual impact and provide the needed contrast to the stone backdrop. By directly printing on glass, the striking look and feel of Bowler’s original art was realized.
With glass printing as the chosen technique, Classic Glass designer Jacob Robison moved on to the challenge of recreating and enlarging Bowler’s artwork. Using advanced vector software, Robison meticulously recreated a precise high resolution version of the original ink design. Three double-paneled pieces of glass were selected to build the glass triptych. The art was then printed on the front and back surfaces of each sandwiched panel excluding the front lobby surface. This functional approach provides a smooth front surface and protects the ink from curious fingers. White ink was printed as a transparency on the glass to successfully recreate the overlay effect of the original vellum.
Today, Egypt’s former President Anwar Sadat’s quests for peace greets visitors to Chincoteague Hall in the form of Classic Glass’s stunning representation of Bowler’s award-winning art. The newly-renovated hall will house the offices of the Baha’i Chair for World Peace, along with the university’s Sadat Chair for Peace and Development, and the George and Lisa Zakhem Kahlil Gibran Chair for Values and Peace.