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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Eliska Harmer Smiley

Wow, what amazing bronze and glass work Eliska has been doing since her recent residency in Mexico! Propped on pillows and logs or hanging from twine in her studio were sculpted wax and works wrapped in doilies waiting to be cast in bronze. 




She's a bit mysterious.

 Michael and I had the privilege to visit with her and Dean Smiley in their Millerton, NY home one evening and my eyes nearly popped out of my head. The food was that good!


 But really...Both Dean and Elizka are master glass artists. Everywhere you looked glass bowls, vases, wings, rats by their tails, and inflated fur filled hearts hung or lay or posed like plump odalesques. On the table a pink glass hand  in a cupped position rested near the computer. ( It now rests on our dining table in Miami!) Around back, an ax handle morphed into a seashell with wings. Translucent resin slid out of a giant bronze snail shell. Snakes entwined to become complementary door handles. A bronze lizard frolicked on his back near the wood pile.
A lot of Eliska's work is inspired by the play of joining separate natural entities. Her past work has combined fur and glass. She spoke of birds, feathers and the ocean surf. You get this sense, gazing into her pieces, that you are on the edge of all you know staring out into the vast mysterious galaxy where anything is possible. And everything is beautiful. Eliska is stepping out...an artist astronaut.
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