Since graduating from the University of Western Australia with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in 2004, glass artist Margaret Heenan has concentrated on developing her practical skill in the process of kiln-formed glass at her studio in Perth, Western Australia.
The versatility and translucency of glass present the viewer with the opportunity to see through it in several different ways simultaneously. This multifocal vision resembles the photographic process, presenting imagery surprisingly reminiscent of landscapes.
The scope of the artist’s work ranges from painterly through to linear.
Margaret’s painterly panels invariably evoke a strong connection with the land. By layering several sheets of glass, often trapping fine substances such as gold leaf, copper wire, strands of fibreglass and aluminium, the artist adds richness, texture and depth to her fluid-edged and singular works. Margaret works intuitively, painting high fire glass enamels directly on, under or between sheets of glass, often all three. Consequently, her presence becomes integral to the narrative of the work as she controls its translucency, colour and line. Her work is frequently fired four or five times in order to achieve the desired effect, inviting the viewer to look beyond the surface.
By contrast, her linear work is highly structured and restrained. She makes detailed drawings and paintings of the design prior to cutting the glass which must be accurate to achieve a seamless fit. The interplay between colour, transparency and opacity is of paramount importance, providing its own set of challenges. The result is an individual artwork which shares a personal engagement with the viewer.
Margaret’s journey is continually evolving; her wish is to create rewarding art for the artist and audience alike.