Biography: Catherine Labonté

Catherine Labonté
Catherine Labonté

The cartoonish glass animals Catherine Labonté creates are always a technical challenge, but she hopes the objects will evoke laughter and wonder in the viewer. What started out as sketches of Garfield from newspaper comics during her youth soon developed into Labonté‘s own feline creations. Wanting to breathe life into her cartoon drawings, she took up glassworking. During her school years at Cégep du Vieux Montréal, Labonté mastered many different techniques including glassblowing, cast glass, sculpture, engraving, lost wax image transfer, and kilnforming. “With my work I am trying to put some soul into a glass piece,” she says. “I almost want for them to be alive.”

Labonté received a 2007 Niche Award in the USA for her work and, after being a finalist for four years, she at last received Montréal’s François-Houdé award in 2008. Since 2015, Labonté has visited The Corning Museum of Glass annually to participate in Adopt-a-Glass Pet Day, and was a Guest Artist at the Museum in 2016, 2017, and 2018.