On July 7, 2017, Traver Gallery, an icon in the Seattle glass art community as well as in the Studio Glass Movement, will turn 40, and it plans to celebrate with a party that evening. Founded in 1977, the gallery exhibits paintings, ceramics, and installation art of all kinds, but it has been the medium of glass where the gallery has had a particularly consequential role in developing the careers of artists as prominent as Bertil Vallien and Lino Tagliapietra. The gallery lays claim to helping discover such notable glass artists as Martin Blank, Sonja Blomdahl, Gregory Grenon, Doug Jeck, Dante Marioni, Preston Singletary, Therman Statom, and Jamie Walker. The story of the founding of the gallery by a young interior designer who discovered a need for better sourcing of local artists, is one of seizing an opportunity, and then executing it so well it changes the field. Seattle's role as an epicenter of glass art would not have been as firmly established without Traver's important role as a leading art dealer in the field.
Viewing articles by Lindsay Hargrave
The Corning Museum of Glass announced a new artist residency program, only this one won’t take place in their studio, but instead in their library. The David Whitehouse Artist Residency for Research will offer one artist up to three weeks in The Corning Museum's Rakow Library, which they are free to peruse (along with the museum’s permanent collection) in any sort of research effort to expand their knowledge of glass technique and history. This residency is similar to the Rakow Grant, which the Corning Museum offers to scholars to conduct research, but the Rakow is reserved for scholars alone and does not necessarily have to take place on site. The Whitehouse residency, on the other hand, is exclusively for artists, is completely onsite, and can last from one to three weeks. The deadline to apply is August 31, 2017.
Glasstress 2017, on view through November 26 in the Palazzo Franchetti in Venice, is a collateral event, which means it's a satellite to the international Venice Biennale. A carefully curated survey of contemporary art in glass, Glasstress includes work by artists who have devoted themselves to glass for their entire careers, but the majority of what's on view in the exhibition is by internationally known artists who came to the island of Murano to have their creative ideas fabricated in glass. This, the fifth iteration of Glasstress, was curated by Hermitage Museum contemporary art department director Dimitri Ozerkov, Austrian artist Herwig Kempinger, and Glasstress founder and the head of Berengo Studio, Adriano Berengo. This Glasstress may be a high-water mark for bringing the biggest names in contemporary art to glass as the exhibition includes work by Sarah Sze, Paul McCarthy, and Ai Weiwei. With artists hailing from Austria to Iraq, the event also includes a site-specific installation in Murano. The "The Unplayed Notes Factory" is an installation in an abandoned glass factory by Loris Gréaud, who is making his Glasstress debut.
Norman Courtney, the founder of the glass program at Pratt Fine Art Center and a prominent Seattle artist, passed away in his sleep on April 29, 2017. In his memory, there will be a celebration of his life at Pratt this Saturday, June 17th, from 5 PM to 10 PM. Courtney was best known for being one of the leading figures in the Seattle glass art community during the 1970s, and helped to build Pratt from the ground up in order to bring arts and craftsmanship opportunities at little to no cost to lower-income citizens of Seattle. After Pratt opened in 1979. Courtney taught classes in glassblowing and casting as well as stained glass, and even built much of the equipment. He directed the glass program at Pratt until 1982, after which he remained on the advisory board until 2003. To his friends and family, Courtney was a figure of life, laughter and kindness who lived life to the fullest and cared deeply for his friends and neighbors.
After a dynamic career spanning nearly 20 years (19 and three-quarters to be exact), Jean McLaughlin will retire as executive director of the Penland School of Crafts in December 2017. She will leave behind an institution far stronger financially, more accessible to the physically challenged, and with greater outreach to the North Carolina rural communities which surround this important craft school. And yet the school McLaughlin came to lead remains recognizable to those who remember it before her tenure, a sense of continuity which she was careful to cultivate and preserve in this organization that dates back to 1929.
Doreen Garner's exhibition "Doctor's Hours," on view in New York City gallery through June 18, 2017, is an assemblage of drawings, video, and sculptural specimens that blend revulsion and attraction to provoke inquiry into atrocities inflicted on African American research subjects in the name of science. Most visceral is the response to the eerily intestinal yet abstract creations made from careful combinations of petroleum jelly-smeared glass, silicone, crystals, human hair, condoms and glitter, perched on shelves at nearly eye-level, spot-lit in the darkened pop-up gallery space on New York City's Lower East Side. Garner, who is often present in the gallery space, plays the role of both artist and surgeon as she invites her audience to become literally one with her art by receiving an actual tattoo, which she will administer either by appointment or for those inspired by their walk-in visit.
WheatonArts in Millville, New Jersey, is preparing to unveil its second “Emanation” exhibition during its long-running GlassWeekend event, a biennial gathering of collectors and artists to celebrate, discuss, buy and sell glass artwork coming up on June 9, 10 and 11, 2017. WheatonArts is a multi-dimensional nonprofit in Southern New Jersey, with programs ranging from a museum of American glass history to programming celebrating regional folk culture. But “Emanation,” initiated in 2015, is focused on the contemporary moment in art through an ambitious program to break down the barriers between fabricators and contemporary artists, something that other programs such as the high-profile Glasstress program by Berengo Studio in Venice don't directly address. Unlike that program, which brings well-known artists to Venice to have their ideas realized by glass masters, the "Emanation" project is based in the studios of WheatonArts' Creative Glass Center of America, best-known for its long-running fellowship program that allows artists free rein to realize experimental ideas at this unique facility. The New Jersey project is careful to avoid the one-way street of becoming a fabrication station. There are multiple efforts to create synergy between the artists and the facility, including during the installation of the exhibition component. The artists chosen for the second iteration of "Emanation" -- Emily Brown, Vanessa German, Michael Joo, Lorna Simpson, Therman Statom, Matthew Szösz, and the group Flock the Optic -- reveal varying levels of technical expertise working with glass, which creates interactions that cross-pollinate between artists approaching the project with different perspectives.
In honor of its fifth anniversary, Chihuly Garden and Glass, the for-profit long-term Chihuly exhibition in Seattle Center, is offering a $10,000 scholarship for an emerging glass artist in the Seattle region to take classes at either Pilchuck Glass School or Pratt Fine Arts Center. The program is offered in conjunction with the Chihuly Studio. Though announced through Facebook and a press release, information on how to apply for this opportunity hasn't been easy to locate. The application is on the Garden and Glass website, but only under "Events," where it comes up at the bottom of an article about the organization's fifth-anniversary activities. Still, this is a generous opportunity, one of a series of initiatives to give back to the glass art community, and worthy of attention for every Seattle-area glass artist who fits the criteria.
For the second time, the Vermont Glass Guild, a group of glass artists based in Vermont, will feature the work of 25 artists in an annual exhibition curated by Joan Wilson at the Southern Vermont Arts Center from May 20th through July 2nd, 2017. An opening reception to be held at the gallery on May 20th from 4 to 6 PM is open to the public. The exhibit will represent a range of styles and forms, from blown glass to fused to slumped. This is because it is a representation of the guild itself: a wide range of artists and ideas brought together by a common locality and medium.
New Orleans-based artist James Vella, known for his strikingly realistic glass trout and delicate goblets, has assumed the position of glass studio manager as of May 1, 2017, at YAYA (Young Aspirations Young Artists), a New Orleans-nonprofit that offers classes and after school programs to local children and teenagers. Vella's full-time position will be responsible for duties formerly filled by two part-time employees, and this expanded role was developed in response to the organization’s growing audience and educational ventures in the New Orleans community.