Preston Singletary is a Tlingit glass artist. Singletary transfers Tlingit designs, traditionally carved in wood, onto glass. He studied at the Pilchuck Glass School in Stanwood, Washington.
Light is integral to his work, and he uses it to add dimension to the glass and his design. His work is in the collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, the Heard Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, and Seattle Art Museum.
Russell Johnson photographs
NATURE: Highlights from the Episode opened on Saturday, March 18. All but one of the works in the show come directly from plants, but all of the works very much relate back to the theme of the episode: exploring the beauty and wonder of the natural world.
Preston Singletary’s glass interpretation of the Tlingit creation myth sits in the window, allowing the piece to be enhanced by the changing light throughout the day.
Two grass-like vessels by Mary Merkel-Hess frame the doorway with their bright red fronds alluding to the grasses that influenced the works as her 9-piece leaf work adds a movement that is naturally dynamic, but motionless all the same.
There’s such a wonderful intimacy about artists’ books, and Catherine Alice Michaelis uses both subject matter and process to showcase her connection to the land. In some of her pieces, she uses a process called eco printing to dye paper using found local plants.
Interspersed throughout the show are Michelle Holzapfel’s carved wood pieces. While not only impressive from afar, these pieces are so interwoven and intricate that it is important to see them in-person.
You can find out more about Singletary’s mythological sculptures, Michaelis’s eco printing, and just how Holzapfel persuades the wood to fit together so precisely by visiting the Craft in America Center and by tuning into NATURE when it premieres on PBS on April 21st (*check local listings).
Jesse Monongya (b. 1952) is a master inlay jeweler, who followed in his father’s footsteps.
I didn’t know my dad, Preston Monongye, until after I came home from the Marines and Vietnam. Then I looked for him and found him. I’d watch him work, doing his silversmithing but at first I didn’t really have any interest in it…then I had a dream…and I looked at my dad’s work again, and it seemed like I knew what I was doing already, right off the bat.
He lives in Scottsdale, AZ close to the Hopi and Navajo reservations. He is best known for his night-sky designs he places in bear shape, which symbolizes strength and power, and other forms. His bracelets, necklaces, pendants, bolo ties, and earrings inlaid with Acoma jet, sugilite, coral, turquoise, lapis, and ivory among others are complemented by the dramatic southwestern landscapes that inspired him.