Paul Messink — kiln-work glass artist and instructor who creates hand-painted, multilayered glass panels presenting nature and figures in deep dimension — has been using his shelter-in-place time to explore a new subjects and experiment with new techniques.

His latest work, You Are Not Alone (shown above), on 25 layers of hand-painted glass, responds to the COVID-19 pandemic. “I wanted to create a stark but hopeful message,” says the Palm Desert-based artist, “so I painted a rising horizon, with a message in a style reminiscent of the Hollywood sign in Los Angeles. The resulting piece is a reminder, to me at least, that we’re all in this together, and that regardless of how physically isolated we are — or even emotionally sad, depressed, or anxious — we all matter and we all have significance.”

After completing the layers, each containing a part of the final image, Messink stacked, fired, and fused them in a kiln to yield a single 8-by-8-inch panel, 3 inches thick, that earned the artist a $500 grant from the California Desert Arts Council (CDAC). The nonprofit organization’s Keep Art Alive fund, established with La Quinta Arts Foundation, offers financial relief to Coachella Valley artists and arts organizations affected by COVID-19-related cancellations of art exhibitions and performances of all kinds. Applications are open through June 1, 2020.

“I’m often drawn to the ethereal, to the ‘unknown’ hidden in the mist,” Messink says. “Mystery and a slight melancholy run through many of my pieces. and when fused, the finished work contains unique depth, dimension, and interaction with light not found in other painted art forms.”

I’m best known for painting misty landscapes and for figurative work, although I’ll sometimes tackle other subjects. 

Visit Paul Messink on line at