Enjoy a rare opportunity to hear from sculptor Karen LaMonte, whose work explores notions of female identity through cast glass clothing and other objects such as hand mirrors. Her subject is nearly always the dress, which ranges in size from that for a child to a grown woman, and in style from frilly Victorian outfits to classic folds enveloping the female form.
LaMonte’s work is as much about the body as it is about dress. She uses herself or students as models for her life-size castings. In describing one of LaMonte’s pieces, Grace Glueck, art critic at The New York Times, says it “suggests the ‘two skins’ that define the human body, the natural and the cultural one of clothing.”
Because of the size of her sculptures, the American-born artist lives and works in the Czech Republic. This is where the best facilities to make large glass castings are located, thanks to Czech artists Stanislav Libensky and Jaroslava Brychtova, who pioneered the casting technique that LaMonte uses.