Last night, we lost Carol Lawton. Quiet, elegant, trained as a photographer (MA, Ceramics and Photography, CSUSJ) with a 1983 NEA Fellowship for her work in pinhole photography, she was an artist who left photography to work exquisitely in cast glass.
Lawton's work in glass was almost always expressed in the form of a house, using it as a platform to explore color and spatial relationships, and knowing that by virtue of its iconic shape, it carried special meaning and significance for each individual. Her work sought to find meaning with formalist concerns of color and dimension as she worked with positive and negative space.
Lawton's work never quite made it in the art market, as we know it. She was careful about execution and presentation, and, glass is a fickle master. But the beautiful work she did produce was often generously donated to contemporary glass organizations in the Silicon Valley, such as BAGI (Bay Area Institute for Glass) and GLANC (Glass Alliance for Northern California) toward their fund raising campaigns. Paradoxically, her work sold more successfully at auction, for higher values, than it sold in galleries.
Lawton taught glass casting and related glass-working techniques at Ohlone College in Fremont, California, and was well liked and respected within her community.