Beautiful art is found all across America, from sea to shining sea. It’s interesting to see the differences that geography brings to artists and their approaches to art. Landscapes, for example, look very different when you’re in New York than they do in Arizona. Likewise, wildlife and culture are unique to their environments, and artists looking to their surroundings for inspiration may bring those influences into their artwork.
California, Oregon, and Washington are known as hotbeds of the art glass movement. The influence of the California College of the Arts and the Pilchuck Glass School is far-reaching throughout the West. David Patchen studied at Pilchuck Glass School, which was co-founded by Dale Chihuly. He currently works from his studio in Public Glass, San Francisco’s center for glass, art, and eduation.
With the largest cultural center in the United States, it’s no wonder that more of our artists call the Northeast home than any other region. Some come to the area for the Maryland Institute College of Art, like Shana Kroiz, who has been teaching there since 1991 and founded the Jewelry Center. Others, like Nancy Linkin, are simply inspired by the beauty of the surroundings. Her studio in coastal Maine is surrounded by a perennial garden and lush woods that influence the fluid, natural forms of her work.
The rich landscape of the Southwest has served as inspiration for numerous artists, dramatically apparent in the earthy palette and sinuous shape of a much of the artwork from the region, notably in art furniture and pottery. Native American history is rich with beautiful pottery designs, and the landscape continues to inspire. What originally began as functional pieces for daily life has been elevated to a fine art form.
The Midwest has left an indelible mark on fine craft in America, with the birthplace of the modern studio glass movement. Harvey Littleton, considered the “Father of the Studio Glass Movement,” taught at the University of Wisconsin. His influence is far-reaching, with his students spreading across the region to promote art glass appreciation and education.
Fine craft has been a cornerstone of American art, with the Penland School of Crafts serving as a creative center of craft in the Southeast. Located on a breathtaking campus, the school is inspiring in its beauty. Whether glass, jewelry, paintings, or furniture, art from the Southeast tends to combine brilliant color and dramatically original design—reflecting the rich and varied culture and landscape of the region.
Whether you’re looking for a desert scene of the sunsets in Sedona, a blown glass vase that reminds you of the waves off the Florida coast, or a piece of stunning jewelry that mimics the waving grasses on the Great Plains, American artists are continuously creating artwork that reflects the beauty around them.