The Creative Side

Artist Klem to showcase glass artwork in upcoming show

The Louisville artist will participate in the
Garden Art Show

LA GRANGE, Ky. (March 2020) – Artist Ann Klem has “always loved glass.” So much so that it is the desired medium for her current artwork and an area in which she has found great success.
“When I escaped the corporate world, I shopped around for what to do next,” said the Louisville, Ky., resident. After a long career in computers, she realized glass was the answer and began using her hands in a different way to create functional and artistic glass pieces.
She previously crafted lamp worked beads, but no longer does so, choosing now to focus completely on kiln-formed glass pieces. It’s a process that can stretch out over several weeks and requires multiple firing with cold working tools, she said. To her it is “exciting every step of the way.”

Photo provided

After leaving the corporate world, Ann Klem taught herself to work with glass. The result has been a whole new career as a glass artist. Below are her foodsafe servers.

Klem begins the process by cutting sheet glass and assembling pieces of glass that will go into the kiln and fire at nearly 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit to form a single sheet of glass. Next, she places the glass among her water users (machines that cut or grind glass with diamond discs or wheels, using water to lubricate the process). The fused glass process requires multiple firings in the kiln in between visits to the water users.
She slices, grinds, sandblasts or extensively shapes the resulting glass to enhance the visual impact of the piece. Further work produces bowls, servers, wall art and sculptures. The latter pieces are created by allowing glass to flow into a plaster mold once it has been cast in the kiln.
“I love the fluid forms, the strong colors, and how those colors react with each other,” she said. “I am also intrigued by the sheer challenge of melting glass.”
Klem will be one of many artists participating in the Garden Art Show “What’s in Your Garden?” It is sponsored by the Arts Association of Oldham County and set for March 10 – April 4 at Gallery 104 in La Grange, Ky. The gallery is located at 104 E. Main St. Artwork in all mediums, functional or decorative with a garden them, are appropriate to enter.
An Awards Reception will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 19. Ribbons and cash awards will be given out for first, second and third places as well as one award for each Best Student in junior and senior categories.
This will be the fourth year for this show, which was organized because “at this time of year when most people are fatigued by winter, the hope of spring is welcome,” said Brenda Marks, the association’s executive director. “What better way to emphasize that hope than to celebrate ‘the garden’?”
Marks added, “Most of the art will be for sale during the show.” Since not all show participants are Gallery 104 artists, there is no guarantee the artwork will be available once the show is over.
Klem said she “likes to participate in shows at Gallery 104 whenever I can.” It is a full-time job for her, and her business goes by the name of Ann Klem Reflections.
“We have strong participation in all of our shows, both adults and students,” Marks said.

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