The Charley Harper Art Studio
In June of 2019 I received an inquiry about a custom window using designs from local minimal realist artist Charley Harper. His work is very recognizable and appears in various forms throughout the city and tri-state area as artwork and merchandise. Although he lived and spread his work over 50 years ago, his legacy still reigns as one of the most important parts of Cincinnati's art culture today.
I was granted permission by the studio to freely choose and integrate the designs of my choice into a window and built Harper's Forest, a collection of some of the more well known images from his large body of serigraphs and lithographs. I chose the cardinal from Cardinal on Corn (Red & Fed), the Blackburnian Warbler and Brown Creeper from Ford Times, the tree branch from A Good World, and a chipmunk from one of his older pieces.
Since then the studio has made me a licensed Charley Harper stained glass artist. A select few of these windows will be featured in art shows, events, and shops throughout the city, including official Charley Harper art shows. This partnership has been an incredible opportunity to promote Charley's work through a different medium and get Hinnenkamp Glass Crafters involved in the art community.
For this first series of window panels I chose to use varying arrangements of "fracture streamer" style background glass I found very appropriate for themes present in his work. I was fortunate enough to stumble upon a large amount of it at a local stained glass shop and added it to my supply.
Having such a selection of background glass allows me to experiment with many different patterns. I shifted my focus towards using it in designing my own backgrounds to complement the Charley Harper element by playing off of its angles, lines, curves, and geometric principles.
One of his most well known designs, this cardinal is from the serigraph Cardinal on Corn (Red & Fed). See the full image here.
Charley Harper used a style that is very translatable into stained glass. His entire collection of serigraphs, lithographs, and paintings contains hundreds of elements I would love to explore.
As of right now, with the exception of the cardinal, woodpecker, mountain bluebird, and blue jay, elements will not be used twice. This makes each window especially unique. Although birds have been the predominant form of subject matter, there are other elements of nature that would work perfectly. Browse through the Charley Harper Art Studio webpage here.
If you are interested in seeing your favorite Harper element turned into stained glass, visit the Contact section to speak with us.