Fragile Nature, River Studies in Glass presents eleven new torchworked glass hanging sculptures, some affixed to the wall and others suspended from the ceiling. The artist chooses glass for its inherent beauty and the endless variety of colors and textures he can create with the medium. With gas torches and a well-honed arsenal of traditional and innovative techniques, Licata stripes, twists, blends and shapes rods of glass into fluid compositions. A lifelong student of glassmaking, the artist has become a technical expert; he often employs Venetian stripping, twisting or fusing to achieve desirable effects in coloration, and surface texture of the glass. He might also use a variety of traditional chainmaille “stitches” in building his work. The process is time and labor intensive and becomes a meditation for Licata. The artist compares making the glass links and connecting one to the other as akin to knitting with flame: "It is very complex and repetitive; I challenge myself with patterns that contradict the idea of protection and the fragility of glass". The shadows each sculpture casts are an integral element and express the elusiveness of time and amplify the changing of the seasons in a visual manifestation.
LIcata's intricate torchworked glass artwork has been exhibited widely including at Sculptural Objects Art and Design (SOFA), Chicago and New York, Glass Weekend, Wheaton Arts and Cultural Center, Millville, NJ, Talente ‘09, Internationale Handwerksmesse, Munich, Germany and at the Glass Art Society’s fashion show, Venice, Italy.
As an art educator, Licata has taught in the Bedford, NY and Scarsdale, NY high schools, and taught glass workshops Peter’s Valley School of Craft, Layton, NJ, Brookfield Craft Center, Brookfield, CT, Penland School of Craft, Bakersfield, NC and Urban Glass, Brooklyn, NY among others. Licata earned his BFA in Sculpture and Art Education from State Univesity of New York, New Paltz, NY and an MFA in Metalsmithing from Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, MI.