Glass Reflections
Cambridge 7th to 9th September

Presenting Author:
Shelley James

article posted 24 Feb 2015

Shelley James

Trained in textiles, at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Arts Decoratifs in Paris, Shelley pursued a career in corporate design for international clients including Visa International, Shell and Habitat.

Deciding to explore the themes of perception and reality from a more personal perspective, she studied Printmaking at the University of the West of England. developing new techniques for encapsulating prints in glass with support from the National Glass Centre in Sunderland and Arts Council England. An ongoing Residency with the Bristol Eye Hospital and PhD research at the Royal College of Art in London has led to a number of collaborative projects with scientists, exploring the intersection between material and virtual space.

Recent exhibitions of Shelley's work include the MRC Centenary "From DNA to the Brain" at Somerset House and the "Illusions" exhibition at the Science Gallery in Dublin.

She has been selected for the prestigious Jerwood Maker's Award and is currently working with the Institute of Making at UCL, King's College London, the Sarah Myerscough Gallery and Arts Council England.

Essential symmetries - crystallography and glass
Shelley James
Glass Artist

This presentation will review technical, creative and scientific dimensions of an ongoing collaboration with the X-ray crystallographer Professor Brian Sutton and the mathematician Sir Roger Penrose.

Beginning with a series of sculptures created for the Somerset House exhibition from DNA to the Brain commissioned to celebrate the MRC Centenary in 2013,

I will show how the techniques were refined to produce the Jerwood Commission, an installation of light and multi-layered geometric forms inspired by the Platonic solids.

This laid the foundations for a new body of work sponsored by Arts Council England for presentation at the Royal Society in 2015, using the optical properties of light to explore the subtle geometry of quasi-crystalline lattices.

Images on this page, from top to bottom:

Moiré matrix series: seam. Hot glass, Shelley James 2012. Image by Ester Segarra

Strand series: dna fragment 1. Hot glass, Shelley James 2013. Image by Ester Segarra

Essential symmetry series: icosahedron. Hot glass and print. Shelley James 2014. Image by Ester Segarra.