G.W. Bot – Solo Exhibition ‘Glass Glyphs’ at Canberra Glassworks

In Artist May 20, 2019

Engraved Poem – Mountains, Clouds and Glyphs’ (2019), glass, ceramics, stainless steel. Courtesy of the artist and Beaver Galleries

G.W Bot ‘Glass Glyphs’

Canberra Glassworks

23 May to 23 June 2019

My work is intimately related to and has a sense of oneness with the landscape and our passage through it.

I came to the Canberra Glassworks last year on a residency. I was looking forward to working with the material that offered light. Over the years, I have been working with paper, canvas, bronze, steel and ceramics, each with its unique, earth qualities. The artist has to bring the light to these materials. Glass, on the other hand, is made of light that comes from the sea and carries that song. I also discovered while working with glass how fragile it can be. This can make it hard to work with but, once harnessed, it becomes

a metaphor for the landscape, the Australian landscape we live in – at once resilient – how many fires, floods and droughts; the scarring by Nature herself does it endure and keep regenerating, but also how fragile at the same time. This fragility has been added to by humankind through mining, overdevelopment, incompetent politicians, wars and greed and something we call climate change. We are extinguishing the light of this land, this earth and it could become extinct as a result, which, in turn, would lead to our own extinction.

In this installation, I have used glass, steel, bronze and ceramics to suggest the diversity and richness of the forest of languages of this landscape – each material is like a dialect, which adds voice to the protective whole. The glass glyphs emphasize the fragility of this earth and of ourselves even though the scale of a number of glyphs strives to suggest strength and majesty. Glass, for me, is also like a child – full of the light of possibilities – the child can grow if nurtured, but can break just as quickly. I think we stand on the edge of this reality at this point in time.

‘Glass Glyphs – Glyph Song’, can also be read as a Crucifixion, a lament for all that contains the future of our lives, sung with morphic, anthropomorphic and zoomorphic glyphs. – G.W. Bot, 2019

From decades spent drawing thousands of quick sketches in the Australian landscape, I have devised an alphabet or language – a system of marks I call ‘Glyphs’. – G.W. Bot

G.W.Bot is a printmaker, painter, sculptor and graphic artist who has exhibited extensively nationally and internationally.  Works created for this exhibition were ‘Glass Glyphs‘ runs from 23 May – 23 June 2019 at Canberra Glassworks. Opening night – 22 May at 6pm.

G.W. Bot will present an exhibition of new works at Australian Galleries in Sydney in February 2020.


Tree of Life (detail) 2019, glass and bronze. Courtesy of the artist and Beaver Galleries

Bot show Canberra Glassworks May 2019 2 copy

Installation image courtesy of the artist. Taken by Sasha Grishin