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Looking to the future from the present reflection of the past

Alana Biffert

January 2024 - June 2024

Art making for me is about significant moments of introspection. Imparting those observations as an offering; the ubiquity of art, honoured within the material’s language. I have dedicated my education and growth to being just that, an Artist. It is my job to discover the hidden beauty in the unfamiliar. Glass has the capability of assuming any form in an immaculate way. It is a technically demanding material that takes time and dedication to be mastered. It is not harmonious with everything. Glass has a sympathetic relationship with light that arouses a traditional connection. This is what draws me to glass as a material.


I believe that art gives us a voice, an opportunity to be heard. My work consists of large-scale mixed media installations that fall under the conceptual umbrella of consumerism and the authentic consequences of time. There is a dynamic relationship between glass and wood that I have chosen to venture. The resolution of these contradicting materials passing through one another are objects that hold the permanent print of an exchange, much like the conversation about the industrialization of our environment. This mirrors the depreciation of one material in exchange for another. A frozen timeline, like a catalogue of memories offering us an opportunity to examine our impact on the environment.


These discoveries embodied through the destruction of the wood take on a particular form that make each individual glass casting authentic, enunciating the understated beauty of a moment. As two materials revel, the dichotomy is extracted and mimicked, accentuating the indelible qualities of glass and its ability to achieve unfamiliar forms while preserving continuity with light.

This grouping of work is a contemporary study representing this investigation. The variables that stay the same throughout the process represent the pulse of our industrial growth. One could not be without the creation of the prior. The vertebras of mother nature versus the binding notions of cultural consumerism, displayed is the depletion of our environment in exchange for industry. The wood, though not present in physical form, is still evident.  Through the process of hot casting, it is reduced to nothing but ash. This speaks to the impact left on mother nature. The glass embodied through its destruction represents “Industry” and the corrosion caused by consumerism.

I am a concept driven, large-scale installation Artist. The foundation of my work surrounds the permanent impressions left and deterioration of what once was. Often my attention is driven by details absorbed through nature's discourse. Whether it’s the natural attrition in social situations or a wider exploration into the pursuit of inflicted and observed reactions, these are the ideas that fuel my body of work.  

Each casting is an opportunity to pause and reflect on what once was and now is no longer. Burning away layer by layer, freezing up each ring of time. Preserving the memory, a photograph in glass. The wood manipulates and leaves the glass with a permanent photograph of its entity embedded and integrated into the glass. Knowing the wood will submit itself to the glass plays a large part in the pairing of these two materials. The wood has no choice, it will succumb to the heat of the glass. It will deteriorate. In a metaphorical sense, this is an investigation into the preservation of our environment and our irrevocable eminence left behind. Each piece of glass was hot poured into the crevasse of a found log. This process was repeated until the wood could no longer hold the glass. The permanent print of an exchange.

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 Alana Biffert's profound dedication to the artistry of glass is a reflection of her unwavering commitment and deep-rooted passion for the arts. Her formative years were spent immersed in the glass culture of Malta, a Mediterranean island, where her childhood dreams revolved around the art of glassblowing.

In 2008, Biffert earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Glass from Alberta University of the Arts, setting the stage for her remarkable journey. A pivotal turning point came when she secured a transformative position as a Glass Technician at Red Deer College through local volunteer work. This opportunity opened doors to collaborations with renowned local artists, ultimately propelling her into the realm of professional glass artistry.

Biffert's artistic focus is centered on crafting concept-driven, large-scale installations. She believes that art provides her with a unique voice, a means to express herself authentically. Her installations are rooted in the conceptual exploration of consumerism and the profound impacts of the passage of time. To Biffert, art represents significant moments of introspection, which she generously shares as a gift to the world, encapsulated within the eloquent language of her chosen material.

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