I was born into an environment where originality and creativity were prized and rewarded. My father, Henry P. Glass, is one of the icons of 20th century American industrial design. His work is displayed in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago as well as museums, galleries and private collections internationally. My mother, Eleanor, is a master dressmaker, member of the Dressmakers’ Guild in Vienna, Austria. She is a heroine as well. She traveled from Vienna to Gestapo Headquarters in Berlin and convinced the SS to send my father from Dachau back to Vienna. They immigrated to the United States in 1939.
I was born in Chicago, where my father headed the Industrial Design Department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. I spent most of my summers taking art classes there. Both my parents encouraged my drawing, painting, sculpture, jewelry and clothing design, and photography. Occasionally, Dad and I would go out and sketch buildings and landscapes together.
I continued my artistic studies during high school and undergraduate school. In the Peace Corps in Brazil, I established a leather goods factory to give sometimes employed shoe makers steady jobs. I designed and made patterns for shoes, bags, belts, jewelry, and household items in leather. I also produced a body of woodcut prints and photographs and designed Peace Corp Bahia’s conference programs.
Subsequent to finishing my Master’s degree in Structural Linguistics at Illinois Institute of Technology, I taught English Composition and English as a Second Language at Loop City College in Chicago. I am fascinated by language and culture, especially how they influence world view and the thought process.
But my greatest pleasure has always been thinking in spatial terms. I am by nature an artist; I like solving relationship problems among forms, shapes, textures, colors, light values, perspective. Most of all, I love making beautiful and visually provocative things. All my life I spent my spare time making art. One of mixed media sculptures, Big Mouth, was accepted by an Art Institute of Chicago jury for the Artists of Chicago show in 1973.
That same year I moved to San Francisco, where I established my corporation, AnneKarin Glass, Inc. My business was designing and producing architectural graphics. Later I became a print broker, specializing in three dimensional point-of-sale materials and in store displays. This work involved contracting graphic designers, photographers, illustrators, lithographers, printers, die cutters, binderies and almost every service related to the graphic arts. I financed and produced sales materials for Levi Strauss, Chevron, Christian Brothers Winery, FCB Direct Advertising, Mother’s Cake & Cookie Co. and many other major companies in the Bay Area.
With the advent of electronic media, it was clear that my field had begun to change dramatically. After fourteen years, I was ready to move on. I enrolled in the graduate school of the Department of Education at San Francisco State University and received my graduate certificate in Educational Therapy a year and a half later. Then I opened my private practice, teaching perceptual and cognitive skills to children and adults with learning disabilities. This work enabled my clients to succeed in school and in the work place. Facilitating learning with the Perceptual Enrichment Program allowed me to help hundreds of individuals to function to their full capacity.
Meanwhile, I have continued to make art. Because I ran out of space for sculpture, I decided to explore 2D and started to study figure drawing in the late ‘80s. Hooked, for years I drew naked bodies at least six hours a week. Once I felt confident in my drawing skills, I took up oil painting. I worked on my art evenings and weekends. More and more it became clear that I wanted to spend most of my time making art. I think visually and imagery is what I like to think about.
My father died in 2003. Since my childhood he had encouraged me to be an artist. I hadn’t done so because I believed I couldn’t survive on my art alone. But losing him made me understand the value and the meaning of my own short time on this planet. I was born to make art; visual thinking places me in my integrity. It makes me feel whole; it makes me feel grateful; it makes me feel happy. I’ve seen my skill improve with every painting and so far, the more I paint, the more I sell. My career as an artist satisfies my soul; and much to my surprise, it also pays my bills.
Besides the Art Institute of Chicago, I’ve shown in juried exhibitions in San Francisco at the SOMARTS Gallery, Modesto Lanzoni Gallery, 23rd Street Gallery, Bonhams & Butterfields, the ArtworkSF Gallery, the Mustard and Harvest Festivals in Napa, CA. and the Green House Gallery in San Antonio. I’ve soloed at the Winter Festival in Lencois, Ba., Brazil, as well as in numerous local venues. And my work can be viewed in several California galleries. I am a member of the Board of Directors of Artist’s Guild of San Francisco, a member of The Oakdale Painters and the National Oil and Acrylic Society. My work is included in the collections of Leroi Moore, saxophonist for the Dave Matthews Band, Jill Eickenberry and Michael Tucker, stars of LA Law, the St. Francis Hospital in San Francisco, the law offices of James Aranda in Chicago, ANS Hotel in Tokyo and numerous other private and corporate collections worldwide.
I continue to educate my hand and eye through drawing, painting, sculpture and photography. The form of the human figure and the emotion of gesture frequently inspire my drawings and paintings. My sculpture expresses humor and pathos through constructions in various materials such as bicycle boxes, sheet copper, rope, vinyl, and papier machê. My photography focuses on abstraction, the forms, colors and textures in the nature.
I was born to make art. I love art. It roots me in my integrity. Visual Thinking is what I do.