Originally from Rochester, New York, Gilbert took her first glass class in 2000. She received her BFA from Rochester Institute of Technology in 2005, and in 2006 she moved out to the Pacific Northwest to work as a member of the Museum of Glass Hot Shop team in Tacoma, Washington. She has been there ever since, assisting artists from around the world in making their work in addition to developing her own practice. Gilbert’s work has been featured recently in the exhibition, Young Glass, at Glasmuseet Ebeltoft in Denmark and Transparency: An LGBTQ+ Glass Art Exhibition at the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
“In her most recent exploration of portraiture Sarah Gilbert uses photo strips from photo booths to collage graphite drawing and cut glass patterns. Generally perceived as a private space despite the public setting, photo booths lead us to do everything from the mundane smile to outlandish acts. Capturing these moments, the photo strip serves as a marker of place and time, either to be remembered and cherished forever or left behind for others to discover.
Sarah Gilbert utilizes this imagery to investigate portraiture through engraved and cut glass. In Gilbert's narrative works, these spontaneous and momentary photographic moments are indelibly etched in glass, shifting our perception of a modern moment from fleeting to permanent. Traditionally used to document the staid and treasured for a lifetime, Gilbert utilizes engraving techniques to alter the narrative of the modern souvenir.”