JERRE DAVIDSON

Shape of Dance

bio

Jerre Davidson is a sculptor currently working in glass. Each sculpture she creates, explores the shifting rhythms of a particular space, using gestural shapes, light, shadow and reflection to capture these spatial rhythms. Jerre studied at various centres of excellence in glass education, including Pilchuck, WA; the Studio of the Corning Museum of Glass, NY; and North Lands Creative Glass in Caithness, Scotland. Davidson has received a number of awards, including a first place award of excellence in sculpture at the Canadian Society of Artists Exhibition and an Ontario Arts Council Project Grant. Her work has been exhibited in Korea, Scotland, USA and Canada. Jerre works out of her studio in Southern Ontario, Canada.

Artist Statement:
Born in Edinburgh, Scotland, I studied at the Scottish Ballet School and later danced professionally. These early experiences are fundamental to my identity, and my love of dance and music is integral to my work. By recording dance movement in a motion capture studio and translating it into a 3-dimensional form using a rapid prototype machine, the dancer becomes part of the sculptural concept and the sculpture dances. These sculptural pieces strive to capture the sense of exhilaration, freedom and movement that I feel when dancing.

Rose Adage,
9.5” x 14” x 10.5”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked lead crystal

Featured in British Biennale 2019 and New Glass Review 41 – 2020
“Rose Spiral relies on a rigorous sequence of digital operations and traditional sculptural processes to translate contemporary dance movements into elegantly formal gestures in cast glass.  Davidson broadens the intersection between technology and material practice by rendering the information of a body in motion into unexpected objecthood” – David Schnuckel (juror) – New Glass Review 41

Below is a conversation we had with Jerre, who shared with us her inspiration, process, challenges, and what we can expect to see next!

Origin
12” x 16” x 10”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked lead crystal

Arabesque
13” x 16” x 10”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked lead crystal

Pirouette, 13” x 10.5” x 9”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

“This almost figurative shape depicts the pirouette movement pathway of the ballerina”
Davidson partnered with Meredith Blackmore – Performance Artist and Fast Motion Studios to realize this ambitious project. The dancer wore special clothing with multiple sensors and her dance sequences were recorded using an OptiTrack system. In post production, bespoke computer code was developed to convert these movement pathway recordings into 3-D printable format.
A 3D printer is used to create the scaled movement pathway model and a silicone mold of the model is created. Wax is then poured into the silicone mold to create a wax positive that is then edited.

Prelude,
12.5” x 11” x 9”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

 

A crack in early casting can lead to a complete loss, as in this case, where this piece had to be completely recast

Nocturne,
11” x 19” x 13”, kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

“I create many pieces from the same movement pathways, however each piece is unique as I make creative decisions on whether to combine, removing or edit sections of the pathways.”

Pas de Trois,
Three pieces each approximately
8” x 7” x 8”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked lead crystal

Below is the excavation on part of Pas de Trois, and the excavated pieces.

Awakening,
10” x 13” x 9”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

 

Left – Jerre builds a hand-built mold for Awakening

Middle – Excavating Awakening in the Kiln – it’s too heavy to be removed without risking breakage

Right – Final stage, grinding and polishing

Adagio,
8.5″ x 9.5″ x 11″. Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

Spiral Waltz, Multi piece wall installation,
Large – 5″ x 4.5” x 3”, Medium – 5″ x 2.5″ x 2.5″, Small-4” x 2.5” x 1.5″,
Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass or lead crystal

“Each component emulates the swirling movement of the spiral waltz.”

“Using the lost wax casting technique, I invested the wax positive in a plaster silica mixture that can withstand the high temperatures of the kiln. I steamed the wax out of the plaster mold leaving a cavity. I then transferred the mold to the kiln and loaded it with glass. At high temperatures, the glass was melted into the cavity, creating the cast glass sculpture.”

Fouetté, 10″ x 14.5” x 11”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

From recorded dance sequences to editing the wax.
The ballet term fouetté literally means “whipping,” short for  “fouetté rond de jambe en tournant.”  Much like the fouetté turn, this piece almost looks like it has been whipped out and back in again.

En’Lair,
8” x 12” x 5”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

Above:  Cleaning off final bits of plaster from Flamenco.

Right:  The Ruby Red Bullseye casting in the process of being cold-worked.

 

Flamenco,
9.5” x 13” x 11.5”, Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

“Flamenco is a dramatic form of dance that transmits passion. This work depicts the strength and emotion of the dancer”  The negative space and shadows add to the dance of Flamenco.

 

Sinuous Synchronicity, Multi-part wall installation
Each piece 15.5” x 8” x 6” Kiln-cast and cold-worked glass

“Like the Corps de Ballet or a Chorus Line, this group of sculptures dances in synchronous harmony across the wall”

Below is a short video where Jerre shows her process.

“In this series of work I translate dance movements into 3D sculpture to explore human emotion. Instead of capturing the figurative shapes of the dancer at a specific moment in time, it is the movement pathways of the dancer’s limbs and body that are captured and translated into sculptural shapes.”

For more information or to purchase Bill Schwarz’ work, please contact Rodrigues Contemporary