➔ About Lionel
I was born in rural Saskatchewan, Canada and grew up outside of LaGrange in Fayetteville, Texas. In the early 80s I moved to Austin, and have lovingly called the city “home” ever since.
While I don’t consider myself an artist in the formal sense, I have dabbled with a variety of materials and compositions through the years including cement, wood, tile, and illustration. I drew a lot of inspiration from a visit to the Chihuly Garden in Seattle, WA several years ago and the potential of glass as a medium to reflect on its setting. My own work is an extension of my love for the gardens and wildflowers of Austin and the surrounding Hill Country.
➔ About the Process
Going out and finding vintage flowers is the fun part. Occasionally, my friends will also bring me blossoms. I’ve even had the opportunity to refashion a family heirloom into a one-of-a-kind piece, which was very special.
The patina process is intriguing because every batch is different so each leaf, stem and joint have to be processed together. Once the patina is complete, visual styling and proportions really come into play. The leaf size and composition are guided by the size and color of the flower, as is the height of the stem.
After I made the first flower, I started questioning it. One of the best pieces of advice I received at the time was – no matter what, do the best job you can with the product. I really feel like the flowers have come a long way since that first prototype. The feedback I’ve received has me helped improve the art. From accelerating the copper’s natural corrosion to making sure that every flower feels unique and special, each piece is made with an eye to bringing out the natural beauty of the original materials.