As I have stated before in my very first entry, I have been wanting to seek out young, real artists to introduce to you. The point is not necessarily to sell their work or promote their artistic ability (although that would be a fortunate by-product). The real point is to give YOU a little inspiration by showcasing someone who is out there creating what they love: Art. Seriously, anything is possible. No matter how small your idea is. Just ask Ariel.
Ariel Hall started out with a small idea. As a young 8th grader, she decided wrapping chunks of colored glass in wire and hanging them from the ceiling would be pretty. Turns out it wasn’t the best look.
Eventually, she molded this idea (literally) into the wire-wound glass crosses she creates today.
Name: Ariel Hall
Age: (almost) 22
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Fun Fact: Ariel is moving in September to Argentina for 6 months to a year. She will be splitting her time between teaching English to kids and doing an internship at a design firm. Oh by the way…she’s going alone and doesn’t know Spanish. But that’s the Ariel I know and love — all fun and adventure!
On one such adventure she took with her mom to another town in Texas, Ariel stumbled upon a quasi-junk yard for glass and other odds and ends. This provided her main medium. Every so often, Ariel drives out to the yard to hand-pick all of the pieces of glass that end up in her crosses. And today was one of the days — we met up for a great lunch at Whole Foods in Austin. Yay! However, this process of driving halfway across the state and picking through a junk yard of glass is part of what makes the price high.
The time alone she spends tediously perfecting her art is another reason to be inspired by her art and passion. With the crosses eventually weighing 5-10 pounds because of the dense colored glass, it is no easy feat to wrap and stabilize the pieces in wire. Especially if you saw how small Ariel is — she is teen-insy! It can take Ariel 3 hours to a full day to perfect one of her crosses, depending on the shape of the glass and how well the wire holds (it has broken before). I guess everyone has off-days — even inanimate objects like wire. Anyhoo, with only one worker (Ariel) creating these hand-made crafts, the cost of labor can be high.
Ariel has sold about 3 dozen of her crosses in Antiques on Dunlavy in Houston, Texas. Her favorite colors to use are the reds and blues because they are such bold colors. Although she can customize an order, she can’t gaurantee when the colors will show up in the junk yard. Reds and blues are the easiest to find/most common, but she has experimented with other colors too, when possible.
The going rate for one of these gorgeous pieces?
$160 – $195.
And as you can see, the amazing crosses are well-worth the price.
But in case you wonder where all of that money goes (besides to Ariel — the architect, buyer, and manual laborer, of course)…Ariel chooses to donate 20% of each sale to the charity of her choice. Since they are sold so sporadically, the charity she chooses varies. But she usually donates the money to the American Cancer Association (a charity that Ariel and her family keep close to their hearts), St. Jude’s Children’s Hospitals, or the Brookwood Community — a home for the mentally disabled population of Houston.
Since I am one of her nearest and dearest friends, and it is my birthday Saturday (July 3 — whoop whoop!), Ariel gifted me with one of her awesome creations this weekend! I am absolutely OBSESSED with my huge stone cross, and intend to hang it as soon as humanly possible. Isn’t it gorg?
I know she has been making these crosses for years, but until recently I didn’t realize how much work she puts into them and honestly, what pieces of true art they are. Ariel had a little dream in middle school and it has evolved into this. She even majored in Interior Design with a minor in Architecture in college to keep pursuing her dream of creating art and decorating. If you have an idea or have always had a project on your mind you’ve wanted to make, then now is the time to go for it!! Take the long weekend to not only party with your friends and family, but also to give that artsy-fartsy bone in your body some attention. You never know what you could create…And it could eventually be featured here on Funky Bear, just like Ariel.
Hope you love this real artist as much as I do!