The Surround Pendant, the second piece in my Iron + Glass series, is a fully adjustable wash light that continues my experiments in applying organic, yet refractive, textures to the surface of glass.

My work starts with the idea that, given the right set of circumstances, light itself can come to life to dance, or even play. Years of experimentation led to the development of my process where I create one-of-a-kind iron plates for use as molds in the glass shop. These plates start their life as a slab of wet clay freshly impressed with a fabric chosen for its potentially refractive pattern. The clay is then translated into the final iron piece through a simple lost wax casting process, but with a twist. In each step of the way, the materials involved – clay, wax, sand and iron – are pushed past their limits, forcing aberrations into each layer that weave themselves around the original impression. When the lenses are finally poured we are rewarded with a beautifully imperfect pieces of cast glass that both collect and refract the light.

Lenses for The Surround are poured with a central negative space allowing for a simple connection point to hold the glass in place; this way we keep it whole, uncut and free of unnecessary distractions. An optimally placed reflector pulls double duty as it washes an even glow across the room while also highlighting the organic nature of the glass suspended in front. Style and utility are directly informed by my time spent lighting and rigging the live entertainment industry. In that world, lighting is designed to be as adaptive and modular as possible. Custom stainless steel hardware I devised for the entire Iron + Glass collection allows The Surround Pendant to exhibit these same qualities. Two possible hanging positions and a full range of tilt allow for near limitless styling as a single unit or part of a sweeping installation.

I am proud to say that, from the beginning, both my process and products were created with the life cycle of each material in mind. All five of them (clay, wax, sand, iron and glass) are either re-used, recyclable or, most likely: both. Lenses are cast in one quick motion, cutting down on unnecessary consumption of energy in the hot shop. Our cast iron is produced at community pours across the USA. Our hardware and glass are produced locally in Brooklyn, NY and Livingston, NJ USA.

The textures that I impress into the clay come from the world around me, and therefore each tool I make has is own personal origin story. It is my hope to eventually create a library of these textures, filled with a rainbow of stories from around the globe. By combining our lives with the materiality of the earth we can anchor this work directly to the world we all live in.

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