Jayne Nixon, artist
The sturdy base and upright flame represent stability, as well as the strength needed to face ongoing challenges. The colour blue represents sky and water, freedom, purity, and clarity.
—Jayne Nixon, artist
Recipients of the 2012 Human Rights Commitment Awards of Manitoba received a piece of art to commemorate the occasion, one that was designed by Winnipeg artist, Jayne Nixon.
The piece is a stylized candle in kilncast glass. SCENE asked Nixon to tell us the story behind the award.
What inspired the design?
Lily Rosenberg at the Manitoba Human Rights Commission and I worked together to create a design that would clearly represent the focus for continued work by the recipients. The sturdy base and upright flame represent stability, as well as the strength needed to face ongoing challenges. The colour blue represents sky and water, freedom, purity, and clarity.
What's the process to make one of the awards?
An original model is sculpted from clay, then a silicone mold is made from the clay model. This silicone mold allows for multiples of the piece to be created. The clay is removed from the silicone mold then melted and microcrystalline wax is poured into the silicone.
Once cool, the wax is removed, cleaned and polished. A refractory mold is applied in layers over the wax. This is mixture of plaster, silica flour, and water. The wax is then steamed out, also known as 'lost wax.'
The mold is washed then filled with pre-measured glass. The mold and glass is put into a kiln and fired to approximately 1500° F for several days. Once cooled to room temperature, the glass is unmolded, washed, and polished.
What is your artistic background?
I have worked with glass for 25 years either solo or for other studios. I worked with the owners at Prairie Stained Glass for 15 years where we created religious stained glass windows. I continue to teach kilncasting retreats through for Prairie Stained Glass.
My education includes intense courses in glass art at Sheridan College and Red Deer College. I continue to create artwork in a variety of media including fabric, encaustic, and watercolour, as well as curating local group exhibitions. My kilncast glass is greatly inspired by the works of Ione Thorkelsson and Irene Frolic.
The awards were given to Jane Burpee, Education Coordinator with the Manitoba Schizophrenia Society, The Rainbow Resource Centre and Louise Simbandumwe, Director of SEED Winnipeg's Asset Building Programs and founder of Run for Rights on December 6.