If you’ve ever seen any art from Ham Glass, you’ll never forget it. Let’s get to know him a bit better.
Ham (short for Hamilton) is originally from Philadelphia and is currently based in Richmond, Virginia. As a young child, his mother constantly enrolled him in art classes at the Philadelphia Institute of Art. Here he gained a strong foundation that allowed him to tap into his creative side and begin his journey as an artist. He attended Hampton University where he earned a Bachelor of Architecture degree. He did work as an architect for seven years, but his passion for public art pushed him to start a career as an artist.
People will find his artworks in Philadelphia, it’s actually all over the place there, with a handful of projects in DC. He also does a lot of work in Northern Virginia. He’s been known to get jobs as far away as San Francisco, but most of his work is here. A lot of his art is community-based, and about half is commissioned. Ham does a lot of work with the community and really knows the value of public art and sees its power to influence and inspire the community. He tries to use public art to bring recognition to non-profit groups and do work with kids in schools.
Lately, he’s turned down a lot of things that require him to go far away from home because he has two kids, a three-year-old and a nine-year-old. It’s hard for him to say no to people and projects but he tries to stick close to home. A lot of Ham’s work has a community engagement aspect, and he gives back to the community as often as he can. Occasionally, he finds an opportunity to have a corporation pay for public art schools in schools. Once he started doing more of that, he started to see how hungry the kids were for art. Now, he’s about finding ways to continue doing it without the corporations. Every time you work with corporations, you have to do things in a certain way, and there are rules. He wanted to be able to make programs for kids where there wasn’t a lot of red tape. So, Ham started to get into grant-making and grant writing.
For the last two to three years, Ham has been dabbling in grants but he also partners with other non-profits who want projects. Lately, he’s been partnering up so he can make projects run the way he wants, and so he can involve kids more so they get to help in creating the paintings.
Because of his background, Ham’s work is heavily influenced by architecture, He’s really intrigued with color theory, and colors are very important to his work. Within the last two years, he’s been making it a mission to do more work just for himself, because he does so much that’s community-based.
You can see Ham’s artwork on his website at www.whosham.com. He’s @whosham or @hamglass on Instagram.
Photo credit: Ham Glass