Elke Westen’s main focus is on glass design, cutting-edge techniques and ecological sustainability. Her work plays with the manipulation of colours and reflections to bring spaces to life, 

Her public artworks as well as her paintings and bespoke jewellery reflect this philosophy.

‘Studio Elke Westen’ was established in 1994 and is now based in Ireland. Elke studied Product Design and holds a Master of Arts.

She lectured at universities and conferences in Germany, Ireland, the UK and Columbia.

Her work can be seen in public buildings and private and state art collections in Ireland, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Japan, Nepal and Columbia.

elke-western-portrait
Elke Westen

“working with glass is like painting with light”

My ideas are mainly inspired by nature: the four elements earth, fire, water and air are transformed and playfully integrated into my work. The changing light- and colour-situations of the seasons, in all their subtleties, as well as the element of artificial light, are integrated into my glassworks and are an essential part of my philosophy as an artist.

The Glass, which forms the substrate for the image, is transparent and stays transparent even after the artistic working process, thus making the “canvas” visible from all angles. It is my intention to unite the viewer and the artistic creation in a unique, personal and long-lasting visual experience.

To experience my glassworks it is important to view them over time, from different angles and under varying conditions, both environmental and personal. In each setting – night, day, mood, etc.– different impressions can be perceived. Light and shade play a strong role in the overall effect. As a contemporary artist, I integrate up-to-date materials and new technologies into my designs and works, to make them as environmentally friendly as possible. 

The work in a design team, together with architects, building contractors and – most important – the future users of the buildings, is essential for my working process and my signature for the perfect integration of my work into public spaces.

Elke Westen, Dipl.-Des., MA

Education

2002
Master of Arts (MA), Glass Design, National College of Art and Design, Dublin, Ireland
1993
Degree as a designer (B.Des.) Product Design, University of Applied Science, Dortmund, Germany                                     
1986-1988
Apprenticeship as reprographer

Awards/Prizes

2020
Excellence Award Glass Design – Irish Enterprise Awards

2003
RDS Award of Excellence, Category Glass 

1994
International design Prize “FORM”

Artwork in Collections

State Art Collection of Ireland 

Artesanias de Columbia

Collection of the Dalai Lama, India

Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery, Nepal

Private collections in Germany, Japan, France, Netherlands, Scotland

List of Public Art projects

2017/2018
Garda Divisional Headquarters, Kevin Street, Dublin/Rep. of Ireland

2016
Direct Commission, “Yellow”, large-scale painting for a private villa, Germany.


2014/2015
Research Project “Light, Colour, Landscape”, new work in progress.


2012/13
Commission, Reception, Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery, Kathmandu, Nepal


2011
Direct Commission, Office of Public Works for Dept. of Social + Family Affairs, Dublin


2009/2010
Invited Artist, glass art and design work for new Kildare Library, Kildare Town/Ireland


2008
Winner Invited Competition Irishtown Garda Station, Dublin, for Office of Public Works, glass artwork


2007
Winner Open Competition East Down Institute of Further and Higher Education, Downpatrick, Newcastle and Ballynahinch/Northern Ireland


2006/07
Winner Open Competition Altnagelvin Hospital, Derry/Northern Ireland

2006/07 
Winner Open Competition Downe Hospital, Downpatrick/Northern Ireland


2006 
Winner Open Competition Ulster Hospital, Renal Unit, Belfast


2005 
Winner Invited Competition State Laboratory of Ireland, Celbridge, Co. Kildare/Ireland, for Office of Public Works


2005 
Winner Open Competition Breast Check Unit, Dublin


2005 
Glass Sculpture Shekina Sculpture Garden, Glenmalure, Co. Wicklow/Ireland


2004 
Selected Artist (Open Competition) Integrated Arts Committee, Muckamore Abbey Mental Health Hospital, Antrim/Northern Ireland


2004 
Winner Invited Competition Carlow Credit Union, Carlow/Ireland, glass entrance


2004 
Invited Artist ‘Sculpture in Context”, Dublin


2003/04 
Winner Open Competition Cavan Innovation + Technology Centre, Cavan/Ireland

2003 
Direct Commission, Office of Public Works for Dept. of Social + Family Affairs, Dublin


2003, 04+05 
Direct Commission, Dept. of Education + Science, Dublin


2002/03 
Winner Open Competition Letterkenny Institute of Technology, Letterkenny/Ireland, glass entrance


2002 
State Art Collection of Ireland for Dept. of Education + Science, Dublin


2002 
Mercer Consulting Group, Dublin


1999/2000 
Direct Commission Energy Supply Company “Stadtwerke”, Peine/Germany


1999
Glass entrance private house Hettenleidelheim/Germany


1997/98 
Direct Commission water Supply Company “Stadtwerke” Hildesheim/Germany


1997 
Direct Commission Colour Scheme + Guide System Multi-Storey Car Park, Saarbruecken/Germany


1995 
Direct Commission Water Supply Company “Harzwasserwerke” Hildesheim/Germany

studio elke westen

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