A n n e t t e T a m m
Remember "Draw Me" in magazines from the 50's and beyond? I won that art correspondence course when I was 13 years old and, although I never finished it (I need more face-to-face instruction), it let me know that art was in my genes and my life. A few years later I was awarded a full art scholarship to the prestigious School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, but my practical side kicked in at that point - helped by my even more practical parents - and I chose to become a chemist instead. I continued my artwork throughout college and afterward, however, working in pastels, oils and other media, until about 45 years ago when I discovered glass.
Early retirement allowed me to move to the West Coast near great art glass suppliers and huge technical and artistic resources. I set up my studio in Anacortes in 1993, took classes at Pratt in Seattle and at Bullseye Glass and Hot Glass Horizons in Portland, and drew on techniques I learned from workshops with Narcissus Quagliata, Dan Fenton, Norm Dobbins, Peter McGrain, Jeremy Lepisto, Patty Gray, Roger Thomas, Paul Messink, Linda Ethier, and Miriam Di Fiori. I joined the Association of Stained Glass Lamp Artists in Gig Harbor in 1994, and my original lamp designs were displayed in their calendars for many years until my explorations led me away from lamps to fused, cast, and slumped glass art.
My current interests have led me in several different directions. My floral fabrics are created at a low-enough temperatures that the resulting forms retain their textural identity: at higher temperatures these “fabrics” would imitate blown glass - beautiful but forever smooth to the touch. My dimensional landscapes evolved over the past 10 years, starting with a class from Jeremy Lepisto and taking a quantum leap with two courses from Miriam Di Fiori. These are comprised of multi-layers of glass sheets, frit and lamp-worked stringers fused into scenes of quiet serenity. Because of their three-dimensional aspect, one feels drawn into these respites, away from over-communication and sensual overload. Following a stint of portraying deep space galaxies, I'm currently developing my pate de verre techniques with the formation of extremely thin, leafy creations as well as experimenting with frit and powder painting.
Basically, I do what I do because I love the creative process and use it to produce beautiful pieces that stir my artistic spirit. When others see my work and share that emotion, I am happily content. I have exhibited and sold from local galleries for many years, most recently at The Good Stuff in Anacortes, and have done extensive commission work from referrals. My pieces can be found in private collections across the country, in the Lambiel Museum on Orcas Island and the Museum of Flight, and have frequently been selected for shows at Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park on Camano Island, and the annual Pilchuck Glass School Auction. Eight celtic-themed stained glass transoms were completed several years ago and may be viewed at the Celtic Arts Foundation headquarters in Mt. Vernon, WA.
No one creates successfully without support and love. I am very grateful to my departed husband, Dick Grill - truly “the wind beneath my wings” for 33 years -, who was always ready to build me an amazing pedestal, a finely-crafted base, shelves - whatever I (or he) thought would enhance or facilitate what I’m doing. And I’m grateful to my son, Steve, for being the wise, talented, accomplished young man that he is. He is my rock.