Thomas Glassford is perhaps most well known for his sculptures using dried gourds. Exploring the sexual undertones of these objects, the artist created wild assemblages and even juxtaposed the gourds with everyday functional objects, from furniture to lighting. Glassford’s body of work called Partituras (Musical Scores) are sculptural works which are either monochrome or coated with colorful vertical stripes that enhance the innate rhythm of the peaks and valleys of rippled metal. Departing from the functional premise of his earlier work, Glassford has focused on a new material, commercial anodized aluminum molding, to create wall sculptures that are unabashedly decorative and optically engaging. His works with anondized aluminum are low-relief constructions that flirt with the divide between painting and sculpture, simultaneously recalling minimalist sculpture and Op-Art painting of the 60s and 70s.
“…Glassford similarly creates playful parallels between vernacular design and high art
in works that recall the Neo-Geo glory days of artists like Haim Steinbach and Jeff
Koons. Sculptures made by stacking plastic, beige-colored cafeteria ware — plates, cups
and saucers — invoke Brancusi on the one hand and global mass consumption on the
— Ken Johnson, New York Times, January 9, 2004.
“Glassford slips and slides through the same terrain as the glossy and superficial magazines of our status-driven consumer culture… Although hardly insulated from the more formal history of art, he finds inspiration in the worlds of fashion, interior decoration, and even landscape (witness City of Greens, his project for InSite97), worlds that, in the final analysis, aren’t so far removed from those in which art itself is manipulated and transformed into a commodity.”
— James Oles, Poliester, 1999