2018 Emerging Artists in Residence

Published Wednesday, November 21, 2018 7:00 am

During September and November, Pilchuck invited six artists to campus as the 2018 Emerging Artists in Residence. Learn more about each of the artists: Allyssa BurchH Schenck, Liesl Schubel, Victoria Ahmadizadeh, Rebecca Szparagowski, , and Suyeon Kim.

Offering an ideal setting for contemplation, research, and exploration, this program provides artists the time and place to develop an idea or project in glass at Pilchuck, with the potential for realizing a new body of work. Pilchuck extends its gratitude to Chihuly Garden and Glass, National Endowment for the Arts, and generous individuals for their support of this transformational program.


Suyeon Kim is a Korean artist whose work narrates collected memories based on her drawings. During the residency, Kim has explored expanding the depth of her illustrations by adding layers and media. Incorporating her illustrations etched in glass, she has added layers with drawings in enamel that are only clearly visible when light is shone on the panel. Kim has also explored combining flameworked illustrations in layered kiln panels. Shown here, the layered chairs and stools represent continuously changing thoughts. Just when you sit down to consider one idea, another idea pops up.


H Schenck’s work addresses the power of societal language within the context of identity. His objects remain flexible, continually changing and evolving to reflect an individual’s expanding sense of self and responsibility. In his process, Schenck develops a relationship with various materials, a symbiosis between object and self. Over time, that evolving relationship speaks to how the object will be incorporated into his work – as inspiration, depiction, or as part of the piece itself. During the #2018EAiRs residency, the natural surroundings, collaborative environment, and history of Pilchuck Glass School, offered inspiration to his research and process as he curated a collection of objects. Schenck introduced kiln-forming into his practice, both in research and process, utilizing symbolism as a connection to his own identity.

Rebecca Szparagowski’s work examines the vulnerability of the human body, both in its internal composition and physical expression. During the residency, she examined a layering method in kiln work, creating 3-D printed-like sheets that form the human body depicted in vulnerable poses. Delving deeper, Szparagowski experimented using this method to create blood cell sculptures.

Allyssa Burch is a visual artist examining the degradation and dysfunction of memory and its connections to the complexities of loss and mourning. During the 2018 Emerging Artist in Residence experience, she explored repurposing personal family heirlooms, objects that connect one more to the individual than generational legacy. In her process of repurposing a lace tablecloth that held personal meaning, Burch dips the lace in a porcelain slip and as the glass is fired the cloth burns away, its ashes remaining, retaining the lace design within the porcelain. Enveloped between two layers of glass, the process encapsulates the object’s memory and brings new life to the piece. Shares Burch, “The residency was really great for allowing me the time to continue exploring this body of work and its technical challenges, while also giving me the headspace to reflect, grow, and simultaneously begin a new body of work.”

From Philadelphia, Victoria Ahmadizadeh is a multi-disciplinary artist and designer. In her work, Ahmadizadeh extracts phrases from conversations, lyrics, and her own writing, presenting the words through a variety of methods. “I’m kind of like a singer/songwriter who can’t play an instrument” Ahmadizadeh explains, “so I pair words to images and objects instead.” During the residency, she created a series of prints, cast glass objects, and sheet glass paintings all reflecting on the emotive content of her chosen text.

Liesl Schubel, one of Pilchuck's 2018 Emerging Artist in Residence, utilizes personal narrative, natural elements, and material exploration in her work to find balance between the fragility and strength of our environments, relationships, and selves. Glass is an ideal medium for this exploration, as one of ambiguous structure, surprising durability, and ethereal aesthetic. During the residency, Schubel found natural specimens around the tree farm and fired them between sheets of glass to create a permanent capsule of their form. Another work in progress features Schubel’s illustrations of her grandmother’s houseplants, encapsulating their memory in an intimate moment for reflection as her family member can no longer care for them. Other works look to meld the visual characteristics of glass and ice, depicting a glacier in a block of solid glass. Each of these works combine the tenuousness of the natural world, complexity of our relationships to it, and appreciation of the beauty, however fragile, of both.