- “This highly contrasting white and purple piece is created by diamond grinding and polishing deep grooves to reveal the intense royal purple,” says Kerrick Johnson of his piece, “White Tail.”
“I love that glass can do anything,” says Kerrick Johnson. “It can create optics, distort vision, become tactile, be rough and sandy, or very shiny. It is endless.” Johnson prides himself in finding new ways to push the limits of glass with innovative cold-working techniques.
First, he blows the glass to create the desired shape. After the hollow piece has cooled for a few days, Johnson uses an industrial diamond wheel to carefully grind away the surface. Each grind mark is planned to create fantastic optics and develop the piece’s “personality.” In his “Kalon” series, Johnson peels away a hard, protective exterior to reveal a colorful interior in a nod to the sepal, the part of a flower that protects the delicate petals in the bud stage. A handcrafted stainless steel stand supports the finished product.
After attending a special fine arts high school in South Carolina, Johnson studied glass at the New Orleans School of Glassworks and the Appalachian Center for Craft in Smithville, Tenn. He won a competitive ArtsMove grant from Choose Chattanooga, which enabled him to build a home and studio in the Tennessee town. In 2005, he formed Kerrick Johnson Glass Studio. His work, ranging in price from $4,200 to $12,000, is available at Pismo Fine Art Glass in Colorado, Chapman Friedman Gallery in Louisville, Ky., and Marta Hewett Gallery in Cincinnati, Ohio.