MEMBER MONDAY: BANDHU DUNHAM

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MEMBER MONDAY: BANDHU DUNHAM

posted on 10:28 AM, October 3, 2016
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'Alfred' - 2013, 23 x 23 x 12 in, lampworked glass, mixed media. Photo by artist

Tell us about yourself!
As a nerdy kid with an extensive chemistry lab in my parents' basement, I started teaching myself lampwork glass technique back in 1975 before it was cool. I currently have my studio in Prescott, Arizona, where I work with a couple of part-time apprentices and a couple more unpaid interns, who handle most of our studio production including some delightful Christmas ornaments and Chanukah menorahs.

What draws you to the material you work with?
The expressive nature of glass lends itself to rendering natural forms as well as more abstract shapes that reflect molecular or mathematical principles. Glass is a material that can not only be looked AT but looked INTO, which is not unlike the human condition itself, so I resonate with it as an artist. And frankly, working with glass is addictive.

What themes do you pursue in your work?
"Nature" might sum it up, but that includes technology and physics (in my steam engines and other kinetic sculptures) as well as natural forms that are quirky or modified by the passage of time. Whimsy and elegance are like yin and yang in my work so I try to blend them and calibrate different balances between them. Innocence is also an important theme which asserts itself from time to time; the experience of watching my kinetic sculptures tends to pull viewers into a childlike state of wonder, which is something we need more of in the world today.

What is your dream project?
I'd love to make a large-scale kinetic glass-and-metal sculpture for a children's museum or large waiting area where people congregate. I've also got a couple more books in me that haven't gotten written yet…

If you weren't working in this field, what career would you choose?
I do a variety of things in this field: writing and teaching as well as making glass in different styles so I already have a lot of spice in my life. Otherwise, I might opt to be an alchemist.

What's something about you that most people don't know?
I was born "Scott," but no one really calls me that anymore except my mom! I was given the name "Bandhu" by a meditation teacher and I use it all the time; it means, "brother" or "friend."

Why are you a member of GAS?
GAS is a fantastic support system for all kinds of glass artists and the annual conferences are such a feast for the mind and senses! I feel fed and refreshed by the conference each year and look forward to them with bated breath.

Visit Bandhu Dunham's GAS member profile here.

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'Crooked House' - 2013, 18.5 x 26 x 26 in, lampworked glass, mixed media. Photo by artist
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'Kinetic Teapot' - 2008, 11 x 8 x 6 in, lampworked glass, mixed media. Photo by artist

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