Ed Pennebaker is a versatile artist who started out working in two-dimensional art with an M.A. in printmaking from Emporia State University in Kansas. He was introduced to hot glass when he was working as an Artist-in-the-Schools from 1981-1983. Producing functional glass forms eventually led to working with sculptural lighting and then to pure sculpture. Along the way he worked with cast glass, fused glass, cast bronze, and steel fabrication. Pennebaker now uses some or all of these media to accomplish works that address issues concerning natural resources and the environment.
Pennebaker’s work has been sought after for collections all over the world and has been exhibited in museums and galleries in the United States and abroad. A Lifetime Achievement award from the Arkansas Craft Guild, an Arkansas Artist Fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council, and artworks included in the Arkansas Arts Center’s Annual Delta Exhibition are some of his many accomplishments. He has been a resident of Arkansas since 1985 and in 2018 built a new studio in Clinton, Arkansas.
I derive much on my inspiration from the environment, especially the garden and the woods surrounding my home and studio. My sculptures relate to the environmental concerns and nature of our planet.
My chandeliers and lighting belong to a contemporary line of “decorative arts” that developed from the arts and crafts movement where craftsmanship is of the utmost importance. Striving for the “perfect object” is the goal of the craftsman/ designer and working directly with the materials at hand provides the greatest satisfaction for me.