Five Minutes with Judith Schaechter

Visiting Artist Judith Schaechter will be working in the Museum of Glass Hot Shop from May 25 through 29. Schaechter is known for her use of stained glass to depict parables with religious and medieval iconography and human imperfections showcased in lavish detail. Her narrative approach finds expression in an eerie world of portraits that reference subversive imagery, carnival, the absurd, and the grotesque. Museum of Glass recently caught up with the Visiting Artist.

I was first attracted to stained glass when…

I started out at Rhode Island School of Design as a painting major, and the graduate painting studios were on the same floor as the glass shop. So, in seeking out the painters’ work, I happened upon the stained glass class and I really wanted to try it. Then I did…and I knew pretty much immediately that I wanted to do that forever.

I use my art to transform the wretched into the beautiful because…

I can!

Judith Schaechter; Horse Accident, 2015; Stained glass, cut, sandblasted, engraved, painted, stained and fired, cold paint and assembled with copper foil; 33 x 45 inches; Photo by Dom Episcopo.

Judith Schaechter; Horse Accident, 2015; Stained glass, cut, sandblasted, engraved, painted, stained and fired, cold paint and assembled with copper foil; 33 x 45 inches; Photo by Dom Episcopo.

My favorite display of medieval stained glass is…

Probably be in a parish church, somewhere in England. I really want to go to York, England, and see some of the stuff in churches there. In a curated setting, then probably the V & A Museum in London. But stained glass really looks best in churches.

I always travel with

My laptop. I don’t really like to travel, but I like to stay connected if I do!

If I wasn’t working with glass, I would…

Probably take up 3-D animation again. There are two things in my life that lured me when I got burnt out on stained glass. The first was writing (and performing) songs, the second was 3-D digital animation. I truly regretted not having another life to pursue those interests, and doing it halfway made me so sad that I actually quit both. But I grieved their loss. I also wanted to be a writer and psychologist…but that wasn’t quite as tempting as visual art.

Plan a visit to Museum of Glass to see Visiting Artist Judith Schaechter working or watch her residency online.

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