The organic forms and subtle tonal variations that occur in nature provide a rich source of inspiration for glass artist Holly Grace. Growing up in Western Australia, Holly was aware of nature’s beautiful but harsh reality, with the line between urban and natural landscapes small and often changing. With a particular interest in the way early designers assimilated patterns from nature to design and decorate mass-produced objects, Holly draws from both nature and its industrial interpretation to create a variety of stylised forms and abstract patterns. Landscape photographs taken during her travels around Europe, and in particular Scandinavia, have informed the colour, shape and texture of her work in the past. Her last exhibition featured imagery that was inspired by the forests of Australia as she explored “the abstract interpretation of nature’s architecture”. Holly has been increasingly drawn towards the history of human engagement with our nearby alpine and sub-alpine regions, both before and after European settlement and her depictions of the mountain huts and billy cans are a result of these explorations. The surface of these cylinders, spheres and pillars are sandblasted and etched with landscape imagery, the translucency of the glass allowing light to reveal subtle tones and shadows within.
Holly Grace completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts at Curtin University in Perth in 1996, then went on to further study glass at Monash University in Melbourne, completing her Masters in 2004. During this time, she also worked as studio assistant to renowned glassmakers in Australia, Denmark, Sweden and the UK. In 2010, Holly was a finalist in the Tom Malone Prize at the Art Gallery of Western Australia and received a Pilchuck Glass Scholarship. Her work is in collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Australian National Glass Collection (Wagga Wagga, NSW), Parliament House, Artbank, Art Gallery of Western Australia and the Glasmuseum (Ebeltoft, Denmark).