Thursday, December 10, 2009

Seattle Mosaic Artist, Kelley Knickerbocker

She describes herself as a “glass texture junkie” who is attracted to the properties of glass and the ways in which it reflects and changes with the light. I describe her as an innovative, talented mosaic artist and educator whose alluring contemporary glass mosaics evoke thoughts of nature, of earthly elements…of fire, ice, oil, water.... There is a certain primal intimacy in the way she fixes these images in glass. She creates a look that engages unique concepts with critical thinking to create a style unlike any other.

33 Degrees

Seattle mosaic artist extraordinare, Kelley Knickerbocker, is founder of Rivenworks Mosaics, a mosaic studio that specializes in custom fine art mosaics and architectural applications.

Her art has been exhibited in local, national and international juried exhibitions.

(Next month, I’ll be taking a class taught by Kelley through Seattle Stained Glass. I can hardly wait!)
Blue View

The artist states:

“Texture and dimension: the stuff of art, the stuff of life. The
textures and dimensions of our physical world - and indeed of our
humanity – result in often startling and profound complexities,
tensions, and contrasts. The possibility of exploring this artistically
in a physical construction sort of way is what draws me to mosaic as an
art form, and in particular to the dangerous topography of raw-edged

Firewater detail

“It’s not particularly friendly work - I go through a lot of
band-aids, and caution viewers to touch at their own risk – but it
yields satisfyingly dense results unachievable by any other means.”

Glimpse detail

Kelley has had artistic interests throughout her life, but the versatility and limitless possibilities of mosaic art facilitated her transition to work as a full-time mosaic artist. Through her studies of glass mosaics, she developed several techniques that she now teaches to other artists, namely: (1) Texture Field, one of Kelley’s techniques in which she creates layered textures using clear glass; (2) Flat Stacking, which is a technique she developed in which translucent glass is stacked over itself on a mirrored or clear glass surface, and (3) Edge Stacking, a technique I’ve tried a few times in my own work in which glass strips of heights are set on edge creating a dense, saturated effect.

Kelley: “I work primarily in glass because of its incredible ranges of color,
opacity, reflectivity, and of course texture. Every surface of glass,
including the occasionally striated riven edge, offers up new
possibilities for visual density, especially when layered over and
against itself in varying heights. Using mirror as a substrate allows me
to experiment with how light passes through and bounces back through
multiple layers of glass, and also allows me to insert unexpected hits
of “glow” into fields of opaque material. Combining glass with opaque
materials such as unglazed porcelain in my mosaic construction was
inevitable and irresistible: the fall-into-me depth of one enhances the
unyielding opacity of the other, and vice versa."

Oil Meets World

Kelley is currently an active member of the Society of American Mosaic Artists.

Oh...and she also has excellent taste in footwear. :-)


Jo Archer said...

Wow, thanks for introducing us to Kelley. Love the way she layers the tiles to make it 3-d. It looks fantastic. I particularly love Firewater and Glimpse. Enjoy your class Stacy; I look forward to seeing what you create.

Kim Larson said...

I absolutely love Kelley's mosaics. They are unique very beautiful. And I am amazed at how she keeps coming up with so many different "looks" to her pieces.

Napa said...

Kelley makes some of the most uniquely beautiful mosaics I have ever seen. Thank you for posting information about her teaching. I'm going to ask my wife if she wants to sign up for a Kelley Knickerbocker class with me. ~~Joe

Anonymous said...

How does she do that? The one called, "Glimpse" looks like it has live electricity running through it. This is amazing art. Thank you for the entry, Stacy.


Ingrid said...

That's what I call ART.

McCain /Palin = Two Liars said...

Stacy, your blog is the best. Without it, how would I have ever heard of all of these artists you highlight? The work of Kelley Knickerbocker is art I will think of as I am falling asleep tonight. I have loved your last four entries but I have some catching up to do to read the rest of them.

Stacy Alexander