A master of studio glass, Richard Marquis has brought a distinct sense of humor and quirkiness into this ancient and traditional technique. He is today celebrated for his refined understanding of color and form and his openness to experimentation.
After studying at the University of California at Berkeley in the 1960s, Richard Marquis went to the island of Murano to work with the finest masters of a glassblowing tradition. Being the first 20th-century American Glass artist to use these techniques, he generously shared his knowledge, contributing to the redefinition of glass as an artistic medium.
Throughout his career, Marquis produced an eclectic body of work characterized by humor, irony and remarkable technical skill, ranging from animal figurines to domestically playful, oddball and contemporary images. An avid collector of beat-up, vintage objects since his early childhood, he often incorporates these items into his pieces. Through this practice, the mundane props of daily life are transformed into candid cultural relics. His distinct visual language is often spiced with an irreverent and witty counter-cultural outlook.
Richard Marquis is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the election for the Outstanding Achievement in Glass by Urban Glass in 2000, the Libensky Award by Pilchuck Glass School and Artist Series Meritage in 2004, the Lifetime Achievement Award from Glass Art Society in 2005, the Lifetime Achievement Award by Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass in 2006, the James Renwick Alliance Masters of the Medium Awards by Smithsonian Institution in 2009 and Neddy Artist Fellowship by The Behnke Fellowship in 2010.
Admired for his technical virtuosity and the originality of his voice, Marquis has influenced an entire generation of artists working in glass.
Richard Marquis was born in 1945 in Bumble Bee, Arizona. In 1982, he moved entirely to an island in Puget Sound, where he maintains his studio today.
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