Email Us – or – CALL (757) 664-6200

Sarah Gilbert Selected as Inaugural 4Front Artist

Her Minkoff Foundation Residency Will Begin in January, 2014

NORFOLK, Va. – (October 1, 2013) – The Robert M. Minkoff Foundation, in partnership the Chrysler Museum of Art, is pleased to announce that Sarah Gilbert has been selected as the inaugural artist for 4Front: Innovation from All Angles, a 14-day residency at the Chrysler Museum Glass Studio in Norfolk from January 8-22, 2014.

Gilbert was selected after an international search and competitive submission process. Applicants were asked to submit ideas for a contemporary art project using glass that is groundbreaking in one or more of the following areas: technique, concept, energy efficiency, and media fluency.

Gilbert’s project, Laboring, will involve body castings of members from the Hampton Roads community during the residency. “Visitors will be invited to make a cast of their body using a direct and inexpensive moldmaking material, dental alginate,” stated Gilbert. “These waxes will be transformed into composite forms to create a variety of corporeal vessels. Visitors will have the uncanny experience of seeing their bodies become objects, and they will ultimately see these forms become part of much larger, collaborative form and event.” The project title plays with the multiple meanings of the word: working, as well as giving birth and creating new possibilities in the world.

“The number and quality of applicants to the 4Front Residency were both impressive and daunting,” said Andrew Page, director of the Robert M. Minkoff Foundation. “It was extremely difficult to narrow it down to a single recipient. Through several meetings with our counterparts at the Chrysler Museum of Art, however, we were able to arrive at an excellent choice. Sarah Gilbert is not the first person to use dental alginate to create molds based on the human body, but she has refined the process to capture extremely fine detail. What sets her work apart are her ideas of how to apply this technique to a community-based collaborative performance project that directly involves the public and engages them both on a visceral and intellectual level. We look forward to the playful and exuberant results from Gilbert’s marriage of highly developed technical skills and challenging theoretical framework that references Russian philosopher Mikhail Bakhtin’s notions of grotesque realism as a celebration of the life cycle and an investigation into the social fabric.”

“Everyone at the Glass Studio is thrilled to be part of this amazing partnership for emerging and innovative artists,” said Charlotte Potter, Glass Studio manager. “The end result will be a patchwork of our community that is sculptural and transformative.”

Gilbert will work at the Glass Studio during the two-week residency and give a public lecture or performance.  An updated website ( and a 45-minute documentary film will be produced about the project and the residency. The public is invited to participate and watch the artist work during the residency. Admission is free, and details and times for public viewing will be available at

Gilbert is an artist and educator based in Portland, Oregon. She is currently visiting assistant professor of art at Reed College, as well as adjunct faculty in applied craft and design, a master of fine arts program offered jointly between Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art. She is a graduate of Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design. Her work spans a wide range of materials and processes, including glassblowing, new media, casting, film, photography, and embroidery. Recent exhibitions include After Image at Reed College (Portland), Equations for a Falling Body at Hunter College (New York), Imagined Communities at Gallery Project (Ann Arbor) and Memory Upgrade at the Center on Contemporary Art (Seattle). The artist’s website,, features images and details about her recent work.

The Robert M. Minkoff Foundation (, a 501(c) (3) organization, is focused on furthering the use of glass in the field of contemporary art and advancing technical knowledge about glass art process. The foundation invests not only in residencies and educational projects, but in disseminating important new developments. For more information on the 4Front Residency, see

The Chrysler Museum Glass Studio is located across the street from the Chrysler Museum at 745 Duke Street in Norfolk. The Chrysler Museum of Art is one of America’s most distinguished mid-sized art museums with a world-class collection of more than 30,000 objects, including one of the great glass collections in America, The Glass Studio, which opened in November 2011, brings the collection to life through innovative performance and educational programs. The Glass Studio offers free glassmaking demonstrations, classes, and workshops for students and adults. The state-of-the-art facility accommodates both aspiring and master glass artists with fully equipped facilities for a range of glassmaking processes.


Contact Cindy Mackey
(757) 754-4553

Download Press Release