Washington Art Works “The Grace of Craft”


Sean Hennessey, “Promises That Remain Unbroken”; kilncast glass, LED, steel

On June 6, 2014,  Washington ArtWorks will open “The Grace of Craft”, an exhibition curated by Über Collector Giselle Huberman. The show features fine art craft work selected by Ms. Huberman, and will be displayed in the “Urban by Nature” Gallery.  Seventeen artists to “come together to create a show that illuminates the power, the unlimited possibilities, the beauty, the grace of craft”says Huberman.

“Craft can tell stories. It can move us. It can serve us and adorn us. And it does all this in a quiet, self-effacing way.” – Giselle Huberman

The seventeen artists participating are each regional authorities in their medium. Artists include Phil Brown, Gayle Friedman, Rania Hassan, Sean Hennessey, Tamara Laird, Laurel Lukaszewski, Jan Maddox, Donna McCullough, Komelia Okim, Nikki O’Neill, Elissa Savos, Chris Shea, Tim Tate, Novie Trump, Andrea Uravitch, Rick Wall, Nancy Weisser.

Washington-ArtWorksThis show will be on display through the end of June. Gallery hours are Monday-Thursday 10am-10pm, Friday-Sunday 10am-4pm.

Washington ArtWorks

12276 Wilkins Avenue, Rockville, Maryland 20852


Washington Visits Washington

mog.susan.warner.famous.glass.artist.tim_tate.michael_janisSusan Warner, Exec Director of Washington State’s Tacoma Museum of Glass dropped in on the Washington Glass School. Susan met with WGS artists and talked about possible collaborative projects between the two Washington glass centers. Lets hope it works out and a Washington² or East Coast / West Coast Glass Smackdown show can happen!

WGS Glass Lecture “Kiln Casters – A Close Look At The Methods Behind the Madness”

With the success of Debra Ruzinsky’s lecture this past October on the Untold History of Studio Glass – This Saturday, May 31st, is the next installment of glass knowledge!


Free Lecture – Kiln Casters: A Close Look at the Methods Behind the Madness! (Class 1701)

An exploration of the symbiotic relationship between technique and conceptual thinking as seen through the work of contemporary glass casters.  Slide discussion of artists who focus on cast glass, with an inside look into the techniques they’ve developed to produce their work. The talk will be presented with lots of images and there will be time for discussions.

Speaker: Debra Ruzinsky. Deb received her BA in Design from the University of California at Los Angeles, and her MFA in Glass Sculpture from RIT. She has been working in glass since 1982. She serves on the publications committee of the Glass Art Society, and was Visiting Asst. Professor of Glass at RIT for the 2008-2009 academic calendar year, and has been a visiting lecturer to the Virginia Commonwealth University’s Glass Program. Her work is part of the collection of the Seto City Museum in Seto, Japan, and the Glasmuseet Ebeltoft in Denmark, as well as the RIT Wallace Library Collection.

Saturday, May 31st, from 11am to 12 noon

Email RSVP to washglassschool@aol.com

Memorial Day


Stephen Beardsell; cast glass, 14″ x 14″ x 1.5″, 2009

In 1915, inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields,” Moina Michael replied with her own poem:

We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.


Stephen Beardsell describing his process of reverse imagery glass casting to workshop audience at the Washington Glass School, June 2009.

Habatat Galleries 2014 Brilliance Award Winner

tim tate monet garden series

Tim Tate’s Monet’s Garden series comes in a variety of colors.

Michigan’s Habatat Galleries has named Washington Glass School’s Tim Tate as their 2014 Brilliance Award winner, celebrating his new direction with Monet’s Garden Series.

The annual Brilliance Award is given to a featured artist at Habatat Galleries that is working on the highest level of innovation, intensity, and imagination within the contemporary glass community.


Tim Tate Monet’s Garden Series, Wall Sconces, 22” x 10” x 10″, Cast glass and LED


Monet’s Garden illuminated artwork installed. photo by Anything Photographic

 Congratulations Tim on the honor and the beautiful artwork! 

Washington Glass Studio Projects

Most of you know about the Washington Glass School’s extensive glass classes and the artwork, but many of you don’t know the third component of the Washington Glass Studio.  The Washington Glass Studio was established in 2001 to deliver artwork to the public realm by creating site specific art for architectural and landscape environments. Here is a highlight of a few recent projects to give a scope of what we are capable of producing.

"Gateway To Community"   Glass and steel arch for Washington, DC Ward 7. Under Construction

“Gateway To Community” Glass and steel arch for Washington, DC Ward 7. Under Construction

We are currently finishing a commissioned public art sculpture in Washington, DC’s Ward 7 in front of the Unity Parkside Health Clinic and across the street from Caesar Chavez High School. This sculpture will be one of the first public art projects in Ward 7. Consisting of a 16 foot high tri-sided glass covered arch, the entire concept was derived from meeting with the community in the Kenilworth neighborhood.

The residents of the community participated in the creation of the glass elements for the public artwork sculpture.

The residents of the community participated in the creation of the glass elements for the public artwork sculpture.

Made up from steel tube sections the steel framework is clad in covered in colorful kilncast glass panels bolted to the structure. Over 300 tiles were required to complete the structure. These 300 tiles we all hand made by volunteers in the community surrounding the arch. The artwork will be internally illuminated with LED lighting throughout the sculpture. Installation is set for end of May/early June.

The Architect of the Capitol provides design direction for the historic Library of Congress Adams Building.

The Architect of the Capitol provides design direction for the historic Library of Congress Adams Building.

Of our recent public art works, the most acclaimed is our cast glass doors for the Library of Congress’ Adams Building. The original doors were cast bronze from the early WPA days. They were designed by Lee Lawrie, who is most known for his designs at Rockefeller Center in NYC. The original bronze bas-relief doors had ceased to be functional years ago, and the entrances were not up to current safety and security code. In a moment of courage and insight, one of the architects of the Architect Of The Capital’s office realized that if the bronze doors were redesigned with glass replicas of the original bronze bas-relief, then he could bring them up to code and increase safety, for much less money.  We then took on this multi-year project, with spectacular results.

LOC.photo.1 good.finished

There were 6 sets of these doors, facing the east and west sides of the Adams Building. American Craft Magazine did a feature story on our work for the Library of Congress and its process – click here to jump to the magazine’s article online.

A smaller scale work was created for the charity organization “Food and Friends” new outdoor park. We made a cast glass Donor Wall that was to honor those who have passed away, to support to charitable work of the organization and to encourage donors to participate. Bas-relief cast glass panels in complementary colors set into a steel framework allows light to pass thru the memorial wall and create colors and patterns on the surrounding plaza. The nature of the glass panels encourages tactile investigation and contemplative interaction.

Food and Friends organization commissioned an outdoor donor wall for their park alongside their Riggs Road facility.

Food and Friends organization commissioned an outdoor donor wall for their park alongside the charity’s Washington, DC facility.

Lastly, one of our most distinguished works was for the Safeway supermarket Bethesda, Maryland. The original store was to be demolished to make way for a much larger structure with parking on the ground floor. As the grocer was committed to Green building, the new structure was to be the first LEED certified grocery store in Montgomery County, and we integrated eco-friendly materials, using recycled glass from the demolished store and re-purposing them to make the new glass and steel ground level building façade. The ground floor building skin was designed to conceal the parking garage function without completely enclosing it.  Here is the result:

Glass recycled from the original site's building was incorporated into Safeway supermarket's first LEED certified building in Montgomery County, MD.

Glass recycled from the original site’s building was incorporated into Safeway supermarket’s first LEED certified building in Montgomery County, MD.

This is only a fraction of what we have competed and what we are capable of doing. No job is too large or too complex. Our architectural design and technical team work well with architects and designers. We are currently looking for additional projects, so let us know in case you know of any, or know someone who might!

Sunderland, UK Artist’s Residency @ Washington Glass School

criss.chaneyTwo internationally recognized glass artists have come to the Washington Glass School for an artist residency. Criss Chaney and Robyn Townsend are both UK-based glass artists that work from Sunderland’s Creative Cohesion art studio. During the International Glass And Clay exhibit in March of 2013, Robyn and Criss presented a workshop on glass inclusions at the Washington Glass School.


2013 workshop led by artists Robyn Townsend and Criss Chaney (center) outline their process of inclusions into fused glass.

Robyn Townsend said that she looks forward to the opportunity to “explore new directions” in glass art in her return to Washington, DC. If you are in the area – make sure that you stop in and welcome the artists back to DC!


Washington Glass School’s 13th Anniversary Open House & Bar Mitzvah!

13 years old already! Time to become an adult…..and have one great party! erwin.timmers.clusterx.recycled_glass.bottle.ledCome on by…lots of music, food…and most of all..great art! See works by wonderful artists like Michael Janis, Erwin Timmers, Sean Hennessey and Tim Tate..plus others!
Thanks to all who have supported us for so many years! Please stop on by just to say hi, see wonderful glass and join us in this celebration!


The adjacent artists studios here in the Gateway Arts District are part of the Open Studio Tour – make a day of it!


Where: Washington Glass School
3700 Otis St.
Mt. Rainier, Md 20712

When: Saturday, May 10th from noon to 5pm.

Smithsonian American Art Museum Features Michael Janis

Smithsonian Distinguished Artist Michael Janis

Michael Janis at the Smithsonian Museum. Photo by Miriam Rosenthal.


Washington Glass School sgraffito workshop. Photo by Miriam Rosenthal.

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) is an independent national non-profit organization that celebrates the achievements of America’s craft artists and fosters scholarship, education and public appreciation of craft art. The JRA is the exclusive support group of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the U.S. national showcase of contemporary American craft. Washington Glass School Co-Director Michael Janis was named “Distinguished Artist” by the JRA. The weekend’s events included a sgraffito glass workshop with Michael held at the Washington Glass School and Michael Janis presented at the Smithsonian Museum’s Turner Auditorium outlining his career, process, and artwork. The talk at the museum was broadcast live and the Smithsonian staff promised that it would be available online soon. 3.michael.janis.smithsonian.american.art.museum.artist_glassThe final event was the JRA hosted dinner on Sunday evening – it was a very busy exciting weekend for the Washington Glass School!4.a.distinguished_artist.james.renwick.alliance.shea.trump.janis_glass_cuddle

Congratulations to Michael – well done and well deserved!