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About Allegra

In the mid 1980’s a series of life changing events led to a rush of images from which I’ve never recovered. Some were based on fantasy. Some described everyday events in an exaggerated way. Others interpreted age-old fables as vehicles for expression of universal experience. In realizing these graphic images on glass I've never separated from my background as a printmaker. The high contrast, limited color and emphasis on shape were all in place as large complicated relief prints on long scroll-like... more

Cut Glass and Thread 2015-2017

When I chose to combine copper and glass I wasn't thinking about any classification of my work such as "multimedia" or "cross over" art. I just thought the pieces looked best that way.

The next development was a background for the glass cut-out figures. I didn't want it to be glass. Paper and drawing was not an answer and even copper wire seemed clunky. Instead I began to consider thread.

Out came my old sewing machine rarely used since I made clothes for my daughter. It took weeks of trial and error but during all that, new possibilities for color, texture and especially line, opened up. I've been missing linear elements since I started using glass.

I learned I could stitch on a water soluble plastic material and when done with all sewing I could dissolve the plastic and only the threads would be left leaving an open, delicate looking background panel that complements and comments on the glass shapes which are mounted slightly in front of it. The glass and the threads are so fragile in different ways.

The first piece to come into being was "Dancer One". The woman in the spotlight throws off lines of action in red and gold as she dances before an audience of an old goat, hound dogs, a pig, an ass, a Tom cat and a cock. Their colorful, or off- color, yells are represented by red, yellow and purple diagonals.

Then came new interpretations of The Princess and the Pea, and Jack and the Beanstalk.

Now work with thread and glass is dominating my imagination.

Cut Glass Shapes, 2013-2015

Here the animals have been liberated from the boundaries of the square or rectangle. Now they're free to roam and carry on in human-like ways. The narrative is not so tight either but the characters and the situations are familiar; from a jazz band and a jug band to a hippo lounging on the beach to a lascivious fox eying a pink rabbit on the bus. All the figures are wall mounted with standoffs that fit into brackets. The animals in a bicycle race and the bands include shapes acid cut from my old copper etching plates.

Narrow Glass Panels, 2005-2013

In all the images, from prints to glass, drawing is the foundation. The images go through many changes before being committed to a final home. The long, narrow format of the relief prints, as well as the use of the narrative carried over to glass. The panels (8"x44") sport color on one or both sides which I fired on first. Then the drawing was transferred to a resist which was cut to remove all negative space. Then the piece was sandblasted.

Square Glass Panels, 2007-2014

For shorter stories the square panel is perfect. All are 18"x18". Over time more color has crept in accompanied by evidence of brushwork. The amount of light passing through the glass changes everything. That's why these glass pieces are so alive.

Vessels, 2016

For shorter stories the square panel is perfect. All are 18"x18". Over time more color has crept in accompanied by evidence of brushwork. The amount of light passing through the glass changes everything. That's why these glass pieces are so alive.

Relief Prints, 2003-2014

All of the relief prints listed here were hand cut out from a soft matrix adhered to Masonite to form long narrow paper panels which are folded at the the top to allow them to hang from a bar. After hand printing some images were given another color using painting as is the case with The Red Shoes and The Bad Bargain.

Each print is an interpretation of an old fable or story. They read from top to bottom and left to right.

The ancient and most graphic quality of the relief print complements these very graphic stories which were often told in dramatic fashion in order to get across important messages about human efforts and the sometimes bad decisions we make and the consequences.

The last three images are panels I'm cutting for a big print called Half Chick. It's from a Spanish Folk Tale. One partially cut panel has my very high tech material and tool alongside. Of course the words will be right way around when printed.

The chick was born with only one leg and one wing but all the same he's rebellious and ungrateful and runs away from home. He refuses to help Water, Fire or Wind so he ends up in Hot Water. But Wind whisks him out of the pot and places him on a steeple to be a weather vane where he is at the mercy of the Wind ever after.

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Allegra's Curated Collection

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