Washington Glass School Year in Review 2014

2014-year-in-review

2014 started with an ambitious solo show at the Glass School  gallery and turned into year of transformation and shows. There were exhibitions, installations, articles, talks and television spots.

Needless to say, a lot has happened. You can be caught up by looking thru the monthly list of events:

January

Audrey Wilson's exhibit “The Aberrant Collection of the Spurious Calamus”

Audrey Wilson’s exhibit “The Aberrant Collection of the Spurious Calamus”

The year started with artist Audrey Wilson’s solo show at the WGS Gallery. The Gallery Beat section of the Old Town Crier newspaper has a great review of the exhibit - “The Aberrant Collection of the Spurious Calamus” – describing Audrey as ”another giant signpost in the evolving art history of glass.” 

American Craft's Chris Amundsen takes a quick pic of Audrey at her show.

American Craft’s Chris Amundsen takes a quick pic of Audrey at her show.

One of the visitor’s to the exhibit was the Exec Director of the American Craft Council, Chris Amundsen, who later sent a note to the artist praising the “thoughtfulness and execution” of her work. 

February

Miami’s international contemporary art fair “Art Wynwood 2014″ had featured international galleries presenting emerging, cutting edge, contemporary and modern works. Works by WGS artists Tim Tate, Sean Hennessey, Audrey Wilson, Michael Enn Sirvet and Novie Trump were on exhibit.

Artist Erwin Timmers reviews construction of the steel framework for the glass public art sculpture.

Artist Erwin Timmers reviews construction of the steel framework for the glass public art sculpture.

At the end of 2013, the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities (DCCAH) had awarded the commission of a new public art sculpture to the Washington Glass Studio. Fabrication of the monumental sculpture took place, as did the community workshops to create the art glass panel insets.

D.C. Ward 7 residents participate in the creation of the District's newest public art sculpture at workshops held at WGS.

D.C. Ward 7 residents participate in the creation of the District’s newest public art sculpture at workshops held at WGS.

The workshops took place throughout Spring of 2014, and each was filled beyond capacity.

March

American Craft Magazine article about Glass Secessionism.

American Craft Magazine article about Glass Secessionism.

The American Craft Council  issue of American Craft Magazine featured an interview held by Editor-in-Chief Monica Moses and WGS artist Tim Tate about “Glass Secessionism” and how artists are exploring and advancing the medium. Titled “The World Beyond Studio Glass” the story became one of the magazine’s most controversial article in many years.

Later in the month, glass powder guru – Michael Janis – saddled up and headed out West to talk with the New Mexico and Arizona’s AACG groups about his technique and his artwork. 

Michael Janis talks to the Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass (AACG) in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Michael Janis talks to the Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass (AACG) in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

April

Michigan’s Habatat Galleries is the oldest and largest gallery in the United States devoted exclusively to artists working with glass as their medium. The gallery hosts an annual “International Glass Invitational“, which for 42 years has introduced and exhibited the greatest artists working creatively with glass. In April,three artists from the Washington Glass School – Sean Hennessey, Michael Janis and Tim Tate were included in the exhibition.

Habatat Galleries 42nd International Invitational.

Habatat Galleries 42nd International Invitational.

Tim Tate addresses the Arizona Art Glass Alliance.

Tim Tate addresses the Arizona Art Glass Alliance.

 

April also brought the AACG group from Arizona to Washington, D.C. The collectors, artists, and glass aficionados visited notable local collections, Maurine Littleton Gallery and wound up their tour of the Nation’s Capitol with dinner and a show at the Washington Glass School. 

 

Josh Hershman's cast glass cameras.

Josh Hershman’s cast glass cameras.

Glass artist and photographer Josh Hershman shows his kiln cast glass cameras, and integrated the visiting AZ crew and the artists showing into a new artwork. Josh’s artwork piece later received an International 1st Place GAS award, and was exhibited at Chicago SOFA.

 

 

May

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) named WGS’ Michael Janis a “Distinguished Artist”. In early May, Michael presented at the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum’s McEvoy Auditorium. He outlined his career, process, and artwork. The talk at the museum was broadcast live and is now online

Smithsonian Distinguished Artist Michael Janis

Michael Janis talks about his artwork at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

UK artists Criss Chaney and Robyn Townsend came to do a residency at the Glass School. The Sunderland artists dove into the projects that were ongoing at the glass studio.

Criss Chaney and Robyn Townsend work with Audrey Wilson.

Criss Chaney and Robyn Townsend work with Audrey Wilson.

One of the ongoing projects that started in May was the overhaul of one of the studio’s big casting kilns. The daunting project was one of the all-hands-on-kiln and even involved having Steve Durow, of the glass program at Maryland’s Salisbury University came to help out on this major project. 

Head of the Glass Program at Salisbury University - Steven Durow - looking overwhelmed at rebuilding the casting kiln.

Head of the Glass Program at Salisbury University – Steven Durow – looking overwhelmed at rebuilding the casting kiln.

Also in May, Tim Tate was awarded Habatat Galleries 2014 Brilliance Award for “working on the highest level of innovation, intensity, and imagination within the contemporary glass community” .

Tacoma Museum of Glass Exec Director Susan Warner came to the glass school to see what is shaking on this side of the country. Susan Warner – Exec Director of Tacoma Mog - in the other Washington – came for a visit and to get some ideas to take home. Perhaps an East Coast/West Coast thing can result!

Susan Warner - Exec Director of Tacoma Museum of Glass - in the other Washington - came to the Washington Glass School to get some ideas to take back.

L-R Tim Tate, Susan Warner – Exec Director of Tacoma Museum of Glass, and Michael Janis

June

The D.C. Gateway Community Arch public art sculpture continued in its creation. In June, after firing and sizing over 300 individual glass panel insets, installation on site took place.

Artist Derek Thomas joined the studio to work on the sculpture.

Artist Derek Thomas joined the studio to work on the sculpture.

 The steel arrived onsite, and the entire studio participated in the assemblage. Miles Lark joined WGS from Michigan to be part of the sculpture team. 

Miles has hit the ground running, helping to install the DC Gateway Arch on his first days in the studio.

Miles has hit the ground running, helping to install the DC Gateway Arch on his first days in the studio.

 

 

 

 

 

July

 

Bon Voyage Nancy Donnelly!

Bon Voyage Nancy Donnelly!

One of our long-time Studio Artists – Nancy Donnelly said farewall to WGS and Washington, D.C. Off to travel through Europe and ultimately return to Seattle, WA.

Taking over the financial bookkeeping role is artist Laurie Brown, and she now keeps the studio running like clockwork. 

Laurie Brown throws up her hands as she goes thru the books.

Laurie Brown throws up her hands as she goes thru the books.

 

WGS often has international artists and come to work and learn at the studio. This year we had Macadonian designers & glass artists Janko and Mimi Gogusevski working at the glass school.

August

Audrey Wilson had a great year for exhibitions! In August, her work was featured at Asheville, NC’s Bender Gallery. Simultaneously, Virginia’s Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center (near Norfolk’s Chrysler Museum) joins with the TCC Visual Art Center featured her artwork in a glass exhibits that celebrated the next generation of the studio glass movement. 

Audrey Wilson at North Carolina's Bender Gallery.

Audrey Wilson at North Carolina’s Bender Gallery.

Michael Janis was off to teach a class in using glass frit to create narrative imagery at Penland School of Crafts in August. With WGS Alum Evan Morgan as his Teaching Assistant, the workshop was non-stop excitement in the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

Michael Janis and Evan Morgan discuss kiln schedules at Penland School of Crafts.

Michael Janis and Evan Morgan discuss kiln schedules at Penland School of Crafts.

Also during August and at Penland – the annual Penland Auction took place. The event is always a favorite – and next year- 2015 – promises to be even bigger, with Tim Tate bringing 100 collectors from the AACG to the party!

Saturday auction pieces at Penland.

Saturday auction pieces at Penland.

 

September

Sean Hennessey’s mixed and multimedia series “Alice Revisioned” solo exhibit was held in September at the Tony Hungerfold Memorial Gallery at the College of Southern Maryland. Sean Hennessey began this work with the desire to add video and lighting to a series of mixed media artwork based on the writings of Lewis Carroll.

Washingtonian Magazine September Issue listed the WGS Beginner's Class among the Top 87 cool classes in DC.

Washingtonian Magazine September Issue listed the WGS Beginner’s Class among the Top 87 cool classes in DC.

Sean Hennessey finishes  set-up at the College of Southern Maryland.

Sean Hennessey finishes set-up at the College of Southern Maryland.

 

 

Washingtonian Magazine’s September issue featured the top 87 cool classes in DC. Under the category of “Unleashing Your Inner Artist”, the head of the class is Washington Glass School’s beginners class.

 

October

The ISC conference returned to New Orleans for the 24th International Sculpture Conference: Sculpture, Culture, and Community. This conference had a panel discussions, “Glass as Sculptural Medium in the 21st Century” that had Professor Gene Koss, arts writer/critic/historian/scuba diver William Warmus, and WGS Professor Tim Tate, moderated by Patrick Blythe.

ISC Panel discussion. L-R Patrick Blythe, Tim Tate, William Warmus, Gene Koss.

ISC Panel discussion. L-R Patrick Blythe, Tim Tate, William Warmus, Gene Koss.

Omaha’s Gallery 72 held an exhibition that showed the arc of development from the start of the U.S. Studio Glass movement in a show titled “The Greatness of Studio Glass“. The exhibit featured works by WGS’ Michael Janis and Allegra Marquart. The newspaper “The Reader” gave the exhibit a glowing review - Gallery 72 has given us an engaging array of pieces from art glass’s past and present.  It is not to be missed.  Harvey Littleton would be proud.”

In October, Washington Glass Studio was on a shortlist for a new public art project to be created for the West Palm Beach, Florida International Airport. After an intense review and meeting with the arts review jury of Palm Beach County, WGS was awarded the exterior public art projects for the Sheriff Department and the Tourism Office.

Erwin Timmers is briefed on the requirements for the Palm Beach project.

Erwin Timmers is briefed on the requirements for the Palm Beach project.

November

 

Tim Tate's stunning installation was on the main aisle.

Tim Tate’s stunning installation was on the main aisle.

The month started with the extravaganza that is S.O.F.A. Chicago. WGS artists Sean Hennessey, Michael Janis, Allegra Marquart and Tim Tate were all exhibiting at the international contemporary art fair.

 

 

SOFA Chicago artists : L-R  Michael Janis, Sibylle Peretti, Alex Bernstein, Tim Tate, Laura Beth Konopinski, Ashley McFarland and Josh Hershman.

SOFA Chicago artists : L-R Michael Janis, Sibylle Peretti, Alex Bernstein, Tim Tate, Laura Beth Konopinski, Ashley McFarland and Josh Hershman.

One of the best aspects of this show is the number of famous glass artists that are actually there in person at the show. It was great to hang out with so many glass stars! More images of the SOFA Chicago show are online – click HERE to jump to the Flickr album. 

Memorial Day, 2014 also was the dedication of one of the Washington Glass Studio’s public art projects completed this year. County Executive Ike Leggett and Council president Craig Rice dedicated the plaza and its Fallen Heroes Memorial, which is part of the Judicial Center Annex construction project in Rockville, MD. 

Fallen Heroes Memorial at Montgomery County's new Judical Annex and plaza.

Fallen Heroes Memorial at Montgomery County’s new Judical Annex and plaza.

December

The pace was non-stop up til the end of 2014. December started with the HUGE Art Basel/Art Miami fairs. WGS’ Audrey Wilson did well at the Context Fair with Alida Anderson Art Project. The Washington City Paper mentioned her work and had her comment on the international art fair in an article “What D.C. Galleries Brought to Two Miami Art Fairs, and What They Got Out of It“. Glass Secessionism (GS) moved forward with founders Tim Tate and William Warmus gathering information about  glass artwork that is outside the traditional Studio Glass realm shown at the art fair.

William Warmus with artwork by Ai Weiwei titled Crystal Cube.

William Warmus with artwork by Ai Weiwei titled Crystal Cube.

Maryland Public Television (MPT) aired the third season of its weekly arts series “Artworks”. The show features profiles of artists from across the country working in all creative categories: musicians, performers, visual artists, writers, designers, artisans – and experimental others who defy definition. Each program gives viewers insider access to outstanding artists they might never see otherwise. December’s Episode 310 featured artwork by Washington Glass School’s Michael Janis in its “Pop Ups” segment.

Washington Glass School Artist Michael Janis featured on Maryland's PBS station.

Washington Glass School Artist Michael Janis featured on Maryland’s PBS station.

Whew! That was a very busy year! Ok, enough of the  auld lang syne – let’s get to work on 2015!

The Washington Glass School Wishes Joy & Happiness in 2015 to All!

 

 

Josh Hershman Int’l 1st Place Glass Art Society Award

GAS International Student Online Exhibition 2014

GAS International Student Online Exhibition 2014

The Glass Art Society (GAS) held its second International Student Online Exhibition, a great new opportunity for student members to present their work to glass professionals, enthusiasts and fellow students from across the globe. Student members currently enrolled full-time in a degree-granting program submitted images of their work - seventy-eight students, representing 30 schools from 8 different countries, participated this year

The jurors were artisLaura Donefer; artist and curator at Bullseye Projects, Michael Endo; and owner of Morgan Contemporary Glass Gallery, Amy Morgan. “After reviewing the work of all these talented people, I came to the happy conclusion that art being created with glass is alive and well in the world today, and that the new generation of artists are indeed bounding forward. There seems to be a technical virtuosity married to a deep conceptual sophistication, with many of the works being hauntingly profound,” said Laura Donefer. 

josh.hershman.glass_camera.washington_school.dc.innovative

JOSH HERSHMAN; Glass, alternative photo process, ceramic decals, size 32″ x 32″

First place went to Alfred University graduate student, Josh Hershman for his piece titled, Derealization, which employs functioning cast glass cameras to “manipulate light and encourage alternate ways of looking at photography by allowing the optical and fluid qualities of glass to bring new meaning and depth to the photographic image.”

josh.hershman.GAS.international.student.alfred.university.art.glass

Josh had demonstrated his technique at the Washington Glass School during the Arizona Art Glass Alliance visit in April of 2014. His photo images of artists and collectors taken with cast glass camera during that time can be seen in the background of the photo used in the GAS International Student catalog – and they were on exhibit at SOFA Chicago this year. Click HERE to jump to the online version of the GAS catalog.

Josh Hershman uses his cast glass camera to photograph portraits at the Washington Glass School, April, 2014

Josh Hershman uses his cast glass camera to photograph portraits at the Washington Glass School, April, 2014

 

Maryland Public Televison Special Episode of ARTWORKS

artworks.mpt.showMaryland Public Television, which is commonly known by its initials “MPT”, is a member of the Public Broadcasting Service. Maryland Public Television has launched the third season of its weekly arts series “Artworks”. The show features profiles of artists from across the country working in all creative categories: musicians, performers, visual artists, writers, designers, artisans – and experimental others who defy definition. Each program gives viewers insider access to outstanding artists they might never see otherwise.

Airing on Thursday, December 18th, at 8:30pm (EST), this week’s episode features artwork by Washington Glass School’s Michael Janis in its “Pop Ups” segment. Plan a night in on Thursday parked in front of the telly! (or set your recorder/DVR/TiVo’s!)

PBS' MPT show Artworks features Michael Janis in this week's episode.

PBS’ MPT show Artworks features Michael Janis in this week’s episode.

 

Washington Glass School Winter Exhibition & Open House

santa.in.washington.dc.glass.xmasWashington Glass School invites all to gather around the warmth of the kilns and celebrate the season! On Saturday December 13th, from Noon til 5, you are invited come on in to the Washington Glass School and see some of the new directions the artists of the Washington Glass School are moving the traditional craft with integration of modern process, mixed media, and narrative.

Audrey Wilson, glass, mi

Audrey Wilson, mixed media

 

Some of the region’s leading mixed media sculptors and artists work from the studios on the edge of DC, and artwork both large and small will be on sale.

Syl Mathis, cast and carved glass

Syl Mathis, cast and carved glass

Works by the following artists will be on display: Diane Cabe, Veta Carney, David Cook, John Henderson, Sean Hennessey, Michael Janis, Trish Kent, Nancy Kronstadt, Jennifer Lindstrom, Allegra Marquart, Syl Mathis, Tim Tate, Erwin Timmers, Audrey Wilson and more! 

 

Erwin Timmers Recycled Glass lighting

Erwin Timmers, lighting made from recycled glass

Visit the adjacent studio spaces as well – next door White Point Studio will have their first open studio! Check out work by artists of Red Dirt Studio and nearby Ani Kasten’s artbar – make a day of it! 

Sean Hennessey, cast glass

Sean Hennessey, cast glass

 

Washington Glass School Winter Exhibition and Open House

 

Saturday, Dec 13th, from Noon til 5:00 pm

3700 Otis Street, Mt Rainier, MD 20712

JRA Day December 6th!

Saturday, December 6, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 pm

jra.day.dec.2014

JRA Day is a one-day showcase for artists who are members of the James Renwick Alliance.This event gives the public the opportunity to see and purchase work by artists in many media. The show features more than 40 artists showing works in Ceramics, Fiber, Glass, Jewelry, Wood and Other Media.

JRA Day is sponsored by the James Renwick Alliance, an independent national nonprofit organization that celebrates the achievements of America’s craft artists and fosters scholarship, education and public appreciation of craft art. The JRA was founded in 1982 and is the exclusive support group for the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, our nation’s showcase of contemporary American craft. For more information on the JRA, go to the James Renwick Alliance website: www.jra.org

Saturday, December 6, 2014 – from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

The Woman’s Club of Chevy Chase, 7931 Connecticut Avenue, Chevy Chase, MD

Directions: click HERE

White Point Studio Opens In Gateway Arts District

white.point.studioThere have been some changes going on recently in the studios adjacent to the Washington Glass School. Flux Studios and its Director, Novie Trump have moved out West, and the Shakespeare Theater Prop Department has begun centralized consolidation of its prop and costume storage space to new locations in the District.

Amidst all the changes to the studios, we welcome a new studio here at the fringe of the District known as “Artists on the Tracks” – the addition of White Point Studio, run by noted ceramic artist Laurel Lukaszewski

Laurel has exhibited across the country and in the UK. Since 2006, she has had ten solo exhibitions in the United States. A founding member of Flux Studios in Mt. Rainier, MD, Laurel has served on a number of nonprofit boards including the Washington Sculptors Group, the National Cherry Blossom Festival and the Washington Project for the Arts Artist Council. Many of Laurel’s artworks are composed of extruded forms resembling three-dimensional line drawings or calligraphic brushstrokes; others are installations of hundreds of hand-formed objects reflecting nature, focusing on the idea of a moment captured in time, a reference to Japanese tea ceremony concepts. Her work is influenced by her study of and work with Japan over the past two decades.

White Point Studio Director Laurel Lukaszewski

White Point Studio Director Laurel Lukaszewski

White Point Studio houses the workspaces of Laurel and six other artists: Kate Kretz, Jeffery Herrity, Tamara Laird, JoEllen Walker, Claudia Tordini and Russell Hawkins.

 “Having worked in the Gateway Arts District for over a decade, I couldn’t imagine moving my space anywhere else.” Laurel said; “I am extremely excited to have a talented group of artists share the space with me, and am fortunate to remain in close proximity to studios like the Washington Glass School and Red Dirt, among many others.”

White Point Studio will host its its inaugural Open Studio on Saturday, December 13, 2014, from noon to 5 p.m. in coordination with neighboring studios, including the Washington Glass School and the studios of Ellyn Weiss, Ellen Sinel and others. The Open House will showcase works in progress by resident artists, as well as art for the holidays.

White Point Studio, LLC is located at 3708 Wells Avenue, Mt. Rainier, MD 20712 (behind the Washington Glass School) in the Gateway Arts District.

Details:
Laurel Lukaszewski, Owner/Director
White Point Studio
3708 Wells Avenue
Mt. Rainier, MD 20712

http://www.whitepointstudio.com

What Tim Tate Meant to Say….

Washington Glass School Director/Mixed Media Sculptor Tim Tate never seems to be at a loss for words – yet he does have his moments where important things were left unsaid. Tim sent this letter looking for a second chance to say what he wants all to know about how Penland School of Crafts changed his art, his work and his life :

What I Meant To Say At Penland by Tim Tate

This last week I gave a very short presentation of my current work during the board meeting at Penland.  It was among my worst presentations ever. Here’s why.

For one thing, I have been making an effort to speak more seriously about my work. I did not take into account how overwhelmingly emotional this place was for me. I started to choke up before I even began, then could barely choke out 20 disjointed sentences during my short slides lest I completely lose it.  I garbled out something about wanting to tell stories. (dear god).

Throw in my complete intimidation by being surrounded by such accomplished artists and board members…all of who seemed to have amazing academic training. It was a hot mess…

Here’s what I meant to say:

I am an artist who did not come to art through academics. While I yearned to go to Cranbrook as a young man, my parents had neither the resources or interest in sending me there.  I sought another profession. Only years later did I see the path of artists retreats like Penland.  Finally a path within my control.  Thus began my educational journey which took me to Penland 20 times, also Corning, Haystack and Penland….always searching for a kiln forming or non-vessel related class.

Even though I did not come out of the studio glass system, I still loved glass with all my heart.  For 10 years I took every free moment, every vacation day to attend these artist retreats. In effect, I created my own curriculum for an unsupervised MFA. After that I thought I had enough of a voice to step out as a full time artist, and haven’t looked back since.

I meant to say that my overall work has meaning. I meant to say that I see my pieces as self-contained video installations.

Blending a traditional craft with new media technology gives me the framework in which I fit my artistic narrative. Contemporary, yet with the aesthetic of Victorian techno-fetishism.  Revelation —, and in some cases self-revelation,   — is the underlying theme of my electronic reliquaries and baroque cast frames.

My interactive pieces can be seen as disturbing because the images that stare back from the video screen prompts a variety of responses: amusement, discomfort, embarrassment, something akin to the feeling you have when someone catches you looking at your own reflection in a store window as you walk by.

But the important revelations here are in the viewer’s response to my hybrid art form and its conceptual nature.  I try to bare everything — the guts of my materials and my inner thoughts — in deceptively simple narrative videos set into specimen jars or ultra-Victorian cast glass picture frames. Nothing is random, all elements are thought out.

I meant to say that to me, these works are phylacteries of sorts, the transparent reliquaries in which bits of saints’ bones or hair — relics — are displayed. In many cultures and religions, relics are believed to have healing powers. My relics are temporal, sounds and moving images formally enshrined, encapsulating experiences like cultural specimens. And perhaps, to the contemporary soul, they are no less reliquaries than those containing the bones of a saint.

With technology rapidly changing the way we perceive art, the current day contemporary landscape closely mirrors Victorian times in the arts. We marvel at and invent bridges between past and present in an effort to define our time and make sense of this highly transitory moment in artistic history.

I meant to say that an artist can make it without going through the academic system. That a strong voice and hard work can count just as much.  This has been taken so frequently as disrespect towards MFA programs and studio glass.  They tend to shout down those that are not vetted with their peers.  I had great respect for them, I just chose my own path. The path of using the artist retreats as my personal MFA program.

I had a bias. My bias was towards extremely narrative work. Not nearly as plentiful then as now. I sought out those classes which would help me in that effort. I wonder if I would have stayed on this path if I had been accepted into an academic program. We’ll never know.

I wanted to say to all the new core and resident artists that I was blown away by their mature work. I wanted to say…..just keep making work. No matter what, just keep making. You are only 1000 pieces away from your goal…..get started! My premise is that an artist who makes a living from his art work will continually evaluate his work, will grow quickly with each new piece. That the working artist approach produces very good work if you put the time and energy into it.

I meant to say that I lived half my life feeling invisible. I had always had to leave DC because there was little glass for me to work on here.  My life happened away from where I lived. Then I realized something. When no one saw me….Penland always did. When my own family didn’t see me, Penland did. When other local artists couldn’t see my work, Penland did. When my friends and even my partners could not see me…Penland did. Penland saw a young man who was completely dedicated to moving his art forward. Penland will also give respect to any artist who is dedicated to his craft and vision. They will always see you. That is the environment that everyone sitting in that room was surrounded by. Not just a place, but the best support system that any artist may ever know.

That’s what I meant to say. That is what I will say now.

Tim Tate

Montgomery County Veterans Memorial by Washington Glass Studio

memorial.plaza.veterans

Montgomery County officials dedicated a new plaza and eternal flame in honor of the county’s war veterans on Monday, just before the next day’s observance of Veterans Day. County Executive Ike Leggett and Council president Craig Rice dedicated the plaza and its Fallen Heroes Memorial, which is part of the Judicial Center Annex construction project.

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (left) shakes hands with retired Navy Cmdr. Everrett Alvarez Jr. of Potomac, who was the longest-held prisoner of war in Vietnam, after Monday’s dedication of Memorial Plaza and unveiling of the Eternal Memorial Flame in Rockville, MD

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (center left) with retired Navy Cmdr. Everrett Alvarez Jr. of Potomac, who was the longest-held prisoner of war in Vietnam, after the dedication of Memorial Plaza and unveiling of Washington Glass Studio’s Eternal Memorial Flame in Rockville, MD

The plaza is part of the Judicial Center Annex construction project that began in 2011 and involved an addition and renovation of the existing Judicial Center. The plaza and green spaces were redesigned to invite public use of the space.

artwork.modern.public.sculpture.usa.memorial.dedicationDuring remarks at the dedication ceremony, County Council President Craig Rice, the son of a Vietnam veteran, noted the importance of having a peaceful place to visit to reflect and remember the sacrifices of our veterans.Among those participating was retired Navy Cmdr. Everrett Alvarez Jr. of Potomac, who was the longest-held prisoner of war in Vietnam. 

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Omaha’s The Reader on Glass Exhibit

Gallery 72's exhibit of studio glass in Omaha, Nebraska.

Gallery 72′s exhibit of studio glass in Omaha, Nebraska.

Recently, the Washington Glass School blog noted Omaha, NE’s Gallery 72 exhibit “The Greatness of Studio Glass”. The show (just ending) had a great review in the local newspaper “The Reader“. Critic David Thompson wrote:” Rich in content and impeccably installed, this show provides a great opportunity to understand the relatively brief history of studio art glass as an American art form. The twelve artists in this show… all combine to say a great deal about art glass’s past, present, and future.”  

Mr Thomas has some notes about WGS artists: “Allegra Marquart’s past as a printmaker lingers in her flat, pictorial pieces that seem glow like pages from a magical storybook (Aesop’s Fables is one of her inspirations).”

Michael Janis’ artwork is also commented upon: “Yet another intriguing use of glass occurs in the work of Michael Janis, for whom the material functions as a lens, sometimes one of several, through which we view the other, more pictorial elements of the work.  Sometimes these elements are three-dimensional, as in the glass leaves that cascade down the front of “The Forest for the Trees.”  Sometimes they are both two- and three-dimensional, like the tiny shadows sprinkled across Janis’s works that are cast by bubbles in the glass surface.”

Mr Thompson ends his review with: “Gallery 72 has given us an engaging array of pieces from art glass’s past and present.  It is not to be missed.  Harvey Littleton would be proud.”

All of us, actually!

Click HERE to jump to the entire article in The Reader”.