Creating art has always been thrilling for me! Even as a youngster, I loved the excitement of looking at a finished art project and thinking, “Wow – that came out of my head!” After finishing my degree in Studio Art, I began my art career sculpting wood and working in metal. In more recent years I added glass to the mix fusing together the disparate qualities of steel and glass.
Steel often appears rugged, defiant, even indestructible, yet it can bend and flow like molasses. Glass appears fragile, yet it hides an unexpected inner strength and can likewise flow like molasses. The two mediums appear always in motion, with light beams reflecting through the glass and spectrums of color reflecting in the steel. As the light dances across every surface, the piece appears anew with the slightest turn of the viewers head, revealing delicate nuances of color and hidden dimensions born of the materials themselves.
My inspiration for art pieces frequently comes from natures design. With my studio situated in the woods of piedmont North Carolina, I peer out my back door and see the organic lines and varied color of my forest and imagine it reflected in a new art piece.
Like the world itself, my art is never static. I am beginning to experiment with copper and glass, and I am excited about learning lamp-work (using a torch to manipulate glass). I feel both of these additions will help in taking my glass work to a new and exciting level. I seek ongoing inspiration for my work through workshops and classes, and by teaching and working with other artists. I try always to explore my surroundings with fresh eyes, open to the vast artistic potential around me.
Wendy Gellert Artist Bio
Born in New Jersey, I come from a rich lineage of creative people. My great-uncle Hugo Gellert was a well known artist of the 1930s and ‘40s, and my mother, Eve Gellert, was an accomplished painter. In addition I have a family full of writers, inventors, painters, craftsmen, musicians, and illustrators. The creativity of the family along with my high school art classes inspired my own love of art. I have always enjoyed making things with my hands using only raw materials and the creative powers of my mind.
After high school I enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where I attended the Navy Schools of Photography as well as Rochester Institute of Technology. I worked as a Navy photographer for 27 years, traveling around the world to document Navy events, portraits, aircraft air to air photography, historical documentation and even accidents.
Retiring from the Navy in 1992, I was eager for a new life direction and new challenges. I graduated from the University of Florida with a BA in psychology but after 2 years working as a Drug and Alcohol Counselor, I knew that psychology was not for me! I turned to my first love, Art. In 2000, I re-enrolled in the University of Florida, this time to study Studio Art. The next two years was transformative.
Every new art class offered a new medium to work in, and a new creative possibility. That was where my interest in working in metal began. I graduated in 2002 with my BA in Studio Art and my horizons opened wide. I began working in wood and metal, and in that same year I had several mixed- media pieces accepted in two juried galleries in Pensacola, FL. I received my first private commissions that same year.
Two years later, I moved with my partner to Hillsborough, NC, where I built a spacious multi-use studio on our wooded property. There, I experiment with different mediums to my heart’s content. To my delight, the areas thriving artistic community offers me ample opportunities to grow as an artist! During attending a 'fused glass' workshop in 2005, I knew immediately that I must somehow put this kind of glass with the metal art I was already creating.
My current work is focused on creatively combining glass and metal, these seemingly opposing materials. Something about the combination spoke to me at a deep level. Though steel often appears rugged, it can bend and flow, and while glass appears fragile, it hides an inner strength. Combining these two materials into art that moves and shimmers with every change of the light has become my passion.
I developed a body of work and have participated in dozens of local art shows here in NC. I continue to branch out, building my collection and my skills. Recently I began experimenting with hand-held torch glass blowing, called Lampwork. I am hoping to be able to incorporate this type of glass to bring more depth and detail to my current work. As I continue moving forward with my work, I can't wait to see where my creativity will take me next. What a joy it is to live a creative life!