A glass artist since the mid-1970’s Carl Powell went from the southeast to the west – then back. He has called Asheville home for almost 20 years. His glass career includes an invitation by Dale Chihuly to teach at the Pilchuck Glass School in Seattle and he did so over three years. Powell is a master in the creation of ground and shaped glass forms with interesting optics and these forms are the signature elements in the stained glass windows he is known for today.
Powell executes glass into sculptural forms and panels for windows, doors or screens. He uses as unique process for altering the surface of plate glass by engraving and drilling into it, then painting into the drilled areas to ‘float’ imagery into a glass-laminated structure. The result allows the viewer to find the engraved optics from different angles and viewpoints allowing for constant discovery in the artwork.
Powell’s work is contemporary, but it occasionally includes historic sheet glass in unusual or discontinued colors. He sometimes adds metal or concrete into his glass sculpture. He could even be classified as a mixed media artist! Window and door panel commissions are welcome, but that’s not all Powell is busy creating. Sculptural objects for tabletop, floor display or for the outdoors are also part of Carl’s glass passion.
Carl was awarded a Crafts Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1981. He has been commissioned for work by City of Anchorage, Alaska, The City of Atlanta, the University of Florida and the International Olympic Committee among others. His work is in the private collections of notables such as Robert Rauschenberg, Dale Chihuly, Paul Marioni, and Tess Harper. An exciting recent commission includes 28 large stained glass windows for the Greensboro, NC Cultural Arts Center performance space.
Powell now has two studio locations in Western North Carolina, so whether we are on an Asheville art studio tour or venture into the Penland School of Craft region, we can include a stop to see Carl’s amazing glasswork. Let me take you for a visit!