press releases

Primitive--Elegant: A Collaboration with Preston Singletary and Dante Marioni

, Aug 26, 2011

Contact: Denise Marie Rose
Phone: 505-954-9902
*Hi res images available upon request


P: A Collaboration with Preston Singletary and Dante Marioni
Two pillars of the contemporary glass art world merge their creative energies to forge a dynamic and introspective shared body of work

SANTA FE, N.M--July 22, 2011] – Blue Rain Gallery is proud to announce an arresting new collaboration between two of the most notable contemporary glass artists working today. Primitive--Elegant is a celebration of the life-long friendship and working relationship between Preston Singletary and Dante Marioni. This special, once in a lifetime show will be unveiled by Blue Rain Gallery at the 18th Annual SOFA (Sculpture Objects and Functional Art) Chicago show held at the Navy Pier November 4 – 6, 2011.

Preston Singletary has long used his cultural heritage of the Tlingit peoples from southeast Alaska to inform his work both aesthetically and spiritually. His modern interpretations of Tlingit animals and objects fused with the clean formal line work of Tlingit designs gave breath to something highly personal and untouched in the field of blown glass. Dante Marioni takes his lead from the Italian masters when creating his voluptuous classical forms adorned with highly precise cane techniques. He rose to eminence at an early age, creating a reputation for being one of the most technically savvy glass artists in the business. Together, these two have combined their aesthetic sensibilities and unique skill sets to create exciting works that deeply satisfy both artists. Utilitarian basket and Italian vessel-like forms are graced with texture, delicate reticello patterns, and bold tribal geometry to elegantly bridge two worlds and two unique modalities. Hot sculpted animal forms—a hallmark of Singletary’s work—nimbly climb the exteriors of a few of the more classical looking vessels, functioning as handles and seamlessly taking the place of what Marioni might usually look to the ornate leaf-like shapes of Art Deco to fill.

Though the individual works of these two artists are worlds apart aesthetically, their journey in glass is a somewhat linked experience. Both artists studied glass at the same institution and worked with many of the same mentors, often side-by-side. It’s true that Marioni was the first of these two men to get involved in this highly addictive medium—and in fact, Singletary was once a studio assistant to Marioni, whose career bolstered long before Singletary’s. Eventually, Singletary’s interests in glass led him from his own classical training to pursue a slightly unorthodox route—or at least a route that was not so neatly paved. And the two artists continued to grow separately in their careers and evolve in their own ways. This is not just a story about a fine collaboration, special as it is; this is a story about two men’s friendship, their individual journeys as glass artists, and the fusion of that experience culminating in a triumphant body of work that touches on 30 years of something that could not easily be articulated in words. Do not miss the opportunity to experience the combined works and physical narrative of these two acclaimed artists!


About Blue Rain Gallery and Blue Rain Contemporary
The Blue Rain Gallery is committed to promoting work of the finest contemporary Native American and regional contemporary artists. Eclectic in nature, the gallery features an extraordinary collection of sculpture, paintings, glass art, pottery and jewelry. Blue Rain Gallery is located at 130 Lincoln Avenue, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501. Blue Rain Contemporary is located at 4164 North Marshall Way, Scottsdale, AZ 85251. Phone 505.954.9902 or 480.874.8110. For more information, visit the Blue Rain Gallery web site at