Found Art: Glass Fruit Sculptures by Stephanie Chubbuck

glass fruit sculptures stephanie chubbuck

Sic Transit Gloria, group of pears and peaches, blown and cold-worked glass and mixed media, $4,200, Lanoue Gallery. / Photograph by Dean Powell

Stephanie Chubbuck got her start in industrial design, but such formulaic work did little to satisfy her creativity. “I wanted color and concept,” she says. So she shifted gears and, in 1994, earned a BFA in sculptural glass and fine metalworking from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

Today, the Princeton-based artist is best known for her blown-glass fruit sculptures, including this installation of pears and peaches. To create her delicate pieces, Chubbuck shapes molten glass gathered from a 2,000-degree furnace, coloring and reheating it as it hardens to achieve the proper form and hue. Once the glass cools to room temperature, she carefully cuts it with a diamond-coated dental tool and embellishes the piece with zippers, snaps, hooks, or buttons. It’s an exacting process, and perfection is critical: Even the slightest flaw could detract from a viewer’s experience, Chubbuck says.

“Ideally, I’ve produced beautiful objects that catch the viewer’s attention and provide time for visual flirtation and examination,” she explains. Chubbuck hopes that, upon closer inspection, viewers will see something of themselves in her work: “We all carry personal, emotional, and physical history. I want to evoke that.”