Since her very first glass fashion show in Toronto in 1989, artist Laura Donefer has been cajoling artists to don costumes celebrating their imaginations and their material, which they then parade before an adoring crowd of fellow artists. For the closing-night party of the 2016 Glass Art Society conference last Saturday night, Donefer pulled out all the stops, memorializing the late rock stars Prince and David Bowie in a tightly choreographed sequence of moveable art and music as artists walked the catwalk set up at The Corning Museum of Glass auditorium. Because of the massive crowd of attendees, and a limit of 800 seats in the auditorium, there were two shows for the first time in the 27-year history of Donefer's productions. While the fashion extravaganza generates massive amounts of excitement, attention, and affection for Donefer, the Canadian artist says the epic event does not directly link up with her personal art practice.
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Billed as "A Celebration of Jon's Life and Achievements," a memorial event took place at the Chihuly Boathouse on Sunday Oct 20th from 11 AM to 2 PM, where the Evelyn Room and Hot Shop were open to friends, family, and well-wishers honoring the memory of the late Jonathan Christie (1968 – 2013). Organized by Jonathan's father, David, the event also saw the launch of a 24-page book entitled Remembering Jon that includes a 9-minute DVD focusing on the evolution of Lyrical Light (2006). Weighing two tons, and made up of more than 300 individual glass horns, the large-scale public artwork is installed at a Jacksonville performing arts center and represents the pinacle of the late artist's output in terms of size and technical complexity. The video was edited down from the 60-minute documentary entitled "Glass Ceiling" that was produced by the local public television station in Florida.
To the Pretenders’ tune, Brass in Pocket (I’m Special), Laura Donefer, in a sequined outfit accented by glass CDs, strutted her stuff to open the 2012 Glass Fashion show in Toledo, Ohio. photo: stephen rekstad
Laura Donefer, the indefatigable coordinator, muse, designer, and emcee of the infamous Glass Art Society fashion show, served up something unique for 2012. The lights slowly came up on the catwalk set up in the Huntington Center in Toledo, Ohio, to the sounds of a string quartet as the
Corning Museum of Glass Hot Glass Show Supervisor Eric Meek in a supporting role with his fiance and professionally-trained dancer Monica Witt in a breathtaking dance duet that opened the 2012 Glass Fashion Show. photo: stephen rekstad
Corning Museum of Glass‘s Eric Meek sat at a bench with a blowpipe. He stood, walked over to a small furnace where the orange glow of the glass inside was suddenly animated. Attaching herself to the blowpipe, a dancer (his fiance Monica Witt) leaped up, giving the molten glass human form. And the next three minutes were filled with a tender duet as the engaged couple shared their passion for glass, dance, and one another with the audience that filled the large facility. As the lights came down, an outpouring of applause greeted the dancers who bowed to the appreciative audience before scurrying offstage, as the mood was about to change — dramatically.
Winding up the year of events that turned Montreal into a “City of Glass“ for 2010, a high-profile exhibition of glass art at the nonprofit space Espace Création Loto-Québec was a parade of some of Canada’s most-important artists during the opening party on Wednesday evening, September 29th. Continuing through December 5th, the exhibition with the full title “Kaléidoscope, variations sur le verre québécois“ (“Kaleidoscope, variations in Quebec glass”) brings together work selected by one of Montreal’s most important curators. Paul Bourassa, curator of the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, chose the works from over 20 Quebec artists, presented in the context of contemporary art themes such as aura, object, narration, history, and nature.