Glass Garden

Solo exhibition by Lauren Thorson

March 2018

Marco Polo describes a bridge, stone by stone. 

“But which is the stone that supports the bridge?” Kublai Khan asks.

“The bridge is not supported by one stone or another,” Marco answers, “but by the line of the arch that they form.” 

Kublai Khan remains silent, reflecting. Then he adds: “Why do you speak to me of the stones? It is only the arch that matters to me.” 

Polo answers: “Without stones there is no arch.” 

→ Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities


Lauren Thorson is a designer who practices between teaching, studio(personal) and Studio-Set (commission). Her practice reflects a set of seemingly disparate concerns: an interest in precision and process on the one hand, juxtaposed with intervening steps and the beauty of chance; a focus on the permanence of printing and building material, counterposed with the subversion of it’s material labour.

In 2013, Lauren was named one of The Walker Art Center’s “Ten Artists to Watch.” Since then she has exhibited, published, lectured, and worked as a designer both nationally and internationally. She has been active with IEEE Visualization Arts Program, VISAP since 2011 in a variety of roles ranging from exhibitor (Providence, RI [2011] ), Co-Chair (Seattle, WA [2012], Atlanta, GA [2013] ), Design Chair (Paris, France [2014] ) and currently Program Committee member (Chicago, IL [2015], Baltimore, MD [2016], Pheonix, AZ [2017], Berlin, GER [2018]). 

Lauren received both a BA in Communication Studies and a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Iowa in 2008 and holds a Masters of Fine Arts from Minneapolis College of Art & Design in 2012. She began her Phd at the University of Minnesota in 2012 researching with the Scientific Interactive Visualization Lab within the School of Computer Science, but since has taken a leave of absence to teach full time. Lauren was Designer-In-Residence from 2014-17 at Virginia Commonwealth University, recently moving into Assistant Professor in the Graphic Design Department.     •