Glass artist William Carlson (1950– ) received a BFA in 1973 from the Cleveland Institute of Art and an MFA in 1976 from New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. In 1976, he taught and eventually became head of the Crafts and Sculpture Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 2003, he accepted a position as chair of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Miami. Carlson became known for laminated, faceted, geometric sculptures incorporating multiple types of glass with other materials, like granite. Light, optics, and color are central to Carlson’s work, and in addition to free-standing pieces, he has created architectural commissions and site-specific installations. He maintains a studio in the Berkshires in Massachusetts.
In this 1982 interviewer with Paul Hollister, William Carlson speaks about his use of core drilling and its place in his overall design strategy, questions his use of millefiori as embellishment, and discusses how the “very rigid design definition” in his pieces differs from the open-ended forms in Dale Chihuly’s work.06:32 Transcript