“It is what it is and it ain’t what it ain’t” by John Prine is the straightforward quote on the Spiritile. This Retired Spiritile by Houston Llew is a VERY RARE find. It was released on April 1, 2009 and retired on January 1, 2014.
Artist statement about this piece: Well, you don’t get much more straightforward than that. Ha! I heard once from a retailer that John Prine’s wife bought an Is tile to take home. If that’s true, to me the idea that maybe someday something I make someone would want to include in their art is poetic – and just like John Prine, I’d want to celebrate it, too.”
Every Spiritile by Houston Llew is handcrafted in Atlanta, GA. From American made copper, glass and wood. Finely ground colored glass is handpainted on copper, then fired by kiln at 1500 degrees. It’s like drawing with sand, Houston says, then toasting it on a very hot fire.
Spiritiles visually share the brilliant moments that make up your unique story. As gifts, they share brilliant moments with the people you love. They can wall hang or stand alone, and will never fade or tarnish.
Molten Glass on Copper Tile
Tile Size: 5.25 X 1.75 X 8.5 in.
About the Artist:
It is not a simple task to branch out from an established medium and create something new. Late night hours, artist wages, and ramen noodles join the blood, sweat, and tears of growing a new art concept from a classic medium. But all of the hard work and long hours can pay off when combined with a vision for telling stories in enameled wall art. Houston Llew started his venture inside a hot garage in Atlanta in the summer of 2008- at the depths of the worst recession since the Great Depression.
A combined vision for art and an eternal optimism turned a dreary economic situation into an opportunity as Spiritiles deliver a beautifully handmade art product to a market looking for affordable pieces to show their fine art collectors. Today, Houston no longer makes Spiritiles out of a garage -“Llewtopia,” as he calls it, is an expanding art studio near downtown Atlanta employing ten full-time artists and artisans as of October 2013.
Each Spiritile is carefully handmade using a series of intricate stencil techniques. From the beginning, Houston’s vision for his enameled artworks drew from the beauty of simplicity. He sought after animagistic theme for his work rather than pursuing the abstract often seen in other enameled wall art. The image is just the beginning – each piece is paired with a quote sgraffitoed around the sides to create an inspiring story through words and images in glass.
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