The emphasis for my current body of sculptural artwork, entitled Designer Beliefs, stems from current social and political issues. I'm consistently thinking about faith, hypocrisy, marketing, consumption, and the false sense of agency and/or choice we as consumers overlook. Glass visually illustrates the ease with which people can design their own belief system, but also the transparency, and fragility of those constructed beliefs. There are those who translate the text of their beliefs very concretely with respects to some teachings and forget, altogether, that others were mentioned at all; effectively designing their own religions in order to fulfill their personal/political agendas. In stark contrast to those who focus on their beliefs, are those who idolize the symbols and designers in the couture fashion world. Brands that were solidified by founders that prided themselves on high quality craftsmanship and unique design, have become exclusionary; those labels now being worn as badges of wealth, power, and status. I try to utilize this combination of seemingly disparate sects of society by visually suggesting thoughts of religion to underscore the idolization of exclusivity and our quest for status; and to question whether identity formation has become more material than spiritual in today's world.
Slate Grove is an Artist, and educator focusing in sculptural forms, especially (but not limited to) Glass. His work is constantly evolving, and deals with references to religion, consumption, and couture branding. He has exhibited his work, and taught, throughout the United States and Finland. He is currently the Glass Facilities Manager at Ball State University, in Muncie Indiana.