Klaus Moje: Painting with Glass
April 29 - September 20, 2009
Klaus Moje is an internationally recognized innovator and pioneer in the studio glass movement. Under Moje's expert hand, this complex and demanding medium is transformed and elevated to a new aesthetic. Showcasing 68 objects, the Museum's survey traces the progression of Moje's work, from his early carved crystal pieces, to his intricately patterned vessels of layered glass, to his monumental, multi-panel fused works. Moje's work is layered with contrasts: playful and serious; complimentary and contrasting colors; saturation and tint; and transparency and opacity.
A highlight of the exhibition is a massive four-panel work, The Portland Panels: Choreographed Geometry, created especially for this exhibition. Composed of more than 22,000 hand-cut strips of glass fused together at the Bullseye Glass factory studios in Portland and totaling 74 1/2 x 218 in., this work is a stunning technical achievement. Over the course of a year, Moje collaborated with a team of glass technicians to overcome problems with the process of fusing glass at this monumental scale. Moje worked with the Portland company Bullseye Glass to create new formulas for glass colors that were compatible and wouldn't crack during the kiln-firing process. In this collaboration between science and art, Moje and Bullseye significantly expanded the capabilities of glass as an art medium.
Color pattern and geometry are clearly championed in his work. He chose early in his career to work with standardized set of reductive shapes--the circle, the square--that invoke the historic form of a functional shallow bowl. The purity of his forms, with clearly honed edges and perfectly machined and ground surfaces speak to his pride in craftsmanship. Moje creates stunning designs with vibrant hues--the kind of saturated, luminescent color that is only possible with glass--and his works of fused glass are elaborate, abstract arrangements of brilliant hues.