Artist Michael Janis first began working with glass as an architect in Australia. After 20 years of practicing architecture, Janis returned to the US with a focus on creating glass art. Known for utilizing the sgraffito technique, Janis layers and fuses finely ground glass onto sheets of glass with overlapping elements. This innovative technique is matched by narrative qualities within the work. Simple forms in combination with intricate glass powder drawings play on the elements of light, color, and sequence to evoke a sense of awareness to the perceptions of self.
“At the core of my artwork is pure portraiture, but great focus on the disharmony of the self and perception. Pressures from society and the toll it takes on one’s emotional state are featured and the familiar is fractured and distorted by outside influence. Subtle shifts, repetition and replacement, or blocking the facial features are attempts to create a feeling of the internal conflict of the subject. My works is meant to explore raw emotions and the fragility of the soul – where one may present a calm face to the world while distracted by inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes.” – Michael Janis