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|Preston Singletary’s art has become synonymous with the relationship between Tlingit culture and fine art. His glass sculptures deal with themes of Tlingit mythology and traditional designs, while also using music to shape his contemporary perspective of Native culture.
Singletary started blowing glass at the Glass Eye Studio in Seattle, Washington, in 1982, where he grew up and continues to work and live. He developed his skills as a production glass maker and attended the Pilchuck Glass School. Singletary began working at the glass studio of Benjamin Moore, where he broadened his skills by assisting Dante Marioni, Richard Royal, Dan Dailey, and Lino Tagliapietra, and where he started to develop his own work. In 1993, he traveled for work to Sweden, where he was influenced by Scandinavian design and met his future wife, Åsa Sandlund.
In 2000, Singletary received an honorary name from elder Joe David (Nuu Chah Nulth) and in 2009 Singletary received an honorary doctoral degree from University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, Washington. Forty years of glass making, creating music, and working together with elders has put him in the position of being a keeper of cultural knowledge, while forging new directions in new materials and concepts of Indigenous arts.
Now recognized internationally, Singletary’s works are included in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts; the Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, Washington; the Ethnographic Museum, Stockholm, Sweden; the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, U.K.; the British Museum, London, U.K.; the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; and two solo exhibitions that toured multiple venues originating with the Museum of Glass, Tacoma, Washington.
Preston Singletary is represented by Blue Rain Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Schantz Galleries, Stockbridge, Massachusetts; and Traver Gallery, Seattle, Washington.
View the Autry’s interview with Preston Singletary here. Recorded live January/2023.
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