Class 2905 – Plastic Fantastic!

Acrylic, Resin, Polyurethane, Poly-Vitro…… whatever  you call it, its plastic! This class is totally designed to help you make molds and to learn about plastics and how to use them in your artwork. This is not your Grandmother’s plastic… the varied uses and materials far outstrips the plastics of yesteryear. Come to this beginnings workshop and get a quick education on the medium that is every where in the international art fairs today. стекло искусство новое玻璃艺术新.فن الزجاج الجديد

USA Glass Industry Update

uroboros-sign2016 has been a year full of upheaval in the the glass industry, with the environmental concerns affecting Bullseye’s Portland, Oregon factory, and the unexpected closure of Spectrum glass.

Unfortunately, recently Uroboros Glass Company- also located in Portland- announced that they will be shutting down after almost 44 years in the business. While very sad, company owner Eric Lovell has said that the situation has become “unavoidable”, citing new environmental regulations, rising cost of materials and facilities, and his own impending retirement age as contributing factors in the decision.

Uroboros plans on discontinuing new production in early 2017, and will continue with the company’s closure in “an orderly fashion” over the next 9-12 months. It is possible that they may find a buyer for the company, but no solid plans are in the works as of yet.

On a happier note, Spectrum Glass announced that they have sold their product line to a California-based glass manufacturer, and are currently in the process of transferring ownership. They haven’t released any details regarding future product line yet, but they are working hard to make the transfer as quickly and smoothly as possible.

While Bullseye Glass has completed production line improvements and has resumed manufacturing most previously restricted colors, they still will not be able to produce chromium-bearing colors until early in the new year.

WGS & Virginia Glass Guild Collaborative Show @ Glass Art Society 2017 Conference

Washington Glass School and Virginia Glass Guild Collaborate for GAS Conference Exhibit

Washington Glass School and Virginia Glass Guild Collaborate for 2017 GAS Conference Exhibit in Norfolk, VA.

The Glass Art Society (GAS) is an international non-profit organization whose mission is to encourage excellence and development of the glass arts, and to support the worldwide community of artists who work with glass. GAS selected Norfolk, VA’s Chrysler Museum 

The Chrysler Museum of Art Perry Glass Studio in Norfolk, VA.

The Chrysler Museum of Art Perry Glass Studio in Norfolk, VA.

of Art and its Perry Glass Studio as host for the 46th annual conference in 2017.

Tying into the creativity that is part of the GAS conference, artists of the Washington Glass School and the Virginia Glass Guild are creating a joint exhibit at the nearby Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center (March 3- June 4, 2017)

Titled “EMBRACING NARRATIVE:  Artwork of the Washington Glass School and the Virginia Glass Guild”, the show will feature works by members of the Virginia Glass Guild and directors and studio artists at the Washington Glass School (WGS). 

Portsmouth Art Cultural Center

Portsmouth Art Cultural Center

Featured WGS artists include directors Michael Janis, Tim Tate, and Erwin Timmers, and studio artists Audrey Wilson, Diane Cabe, Sean Hennessey,  Allegra Marquart, Syl Mathis, Elizabeth Mears, Debra Ruzinsky, Nancy Weisser, Erin Antognoli, Steve Durow, Jennifer Lindstrom, Sherry Selevan, and Jeff Zimmer.

Embracing Narrative: Artwork of the Washington Glass School and the Virginia Glass Guild

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

400 High Street, Portsmouth, VA 23704

March 3 – June 4, 2017

Dr Claudia Rousseau Reviews Michael Janis @ Maurine Littleton Gallery


Dr Claudia Rousseau – Professor of Art History at Montgomery College – reviews Michael Janis’ Maurine Littleton Gallery exhibit “Echoes of Leaves and Shadows“.

Writing in the the East City Art the renowned critic wrote about his “glass works that cross the line between sculpture (as in relief sculpture) and painting, and which stand out in brilliant color….From both a technical and subjective viewpoint this is a striking show.”

Click HERE to jump to the article online.

WGS’ Michael Janis Wins DC Mayor’s Arts Award!

The Mayor's Arts Awards are presented in a similar manner to Hollywood's Academy Awards.

DC Mayor’s Arts Awards are presented in a similar manner to Hollywood’s Academy Awards.

The Mayor’s Arts Awards are the most prestigious honors conferred by the city of Washington, D.C. on artists, teachers, nonprofit organizations and patrons of the arts and humanities. D.C.’s 31st Annual Awards ceremony was held at the Historic Lincoln Theater this past Thursday, and Washington Glass School Co-Director Michael Janis was awarded the “Excellence in the Arts” honor!

Michael Janis onstage at the Historic Lincoln Theatre

The DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities works hard at supporting and advancing the arts, humanities and creative industries and presented the awards as recognition of how the creative community impacts the District.

Michael Janis interviewed at the Lincoln Theatre.

Michael Janis interviewed at the Lincoln Theatre.

The Awards Gala – modeled after Hollywood’s Academy Awards – had it all – the red carpet (but in green), media and press interviews, glamor, gowns, glitter.

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser welcomes the audience to the 31st Mayors Arts Awards.

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser welcomes the audience to the 31st Mayors Arts Awards.

Mayor Muriel Bowser welcomed the audience to the award ceremony and some incredible performances were throughout the evening’s ceremony. In addition to Michael Janis winning the Excellence in the Arts, the winners included Once Common Unity for Excellence in Creative Industries, Leron Boyd for Outstanding Student, Dawn Johnson for Excellence in Teaching and Tara Campbell for Outstanding New Artist. The DCCAH also presented three honors – Lou Stovall, for Lifetime Achievement, Julianne Brienza for Visionary Leadership and   E. Ethelbert Miller for Distinguished Honor.

Washington Performing Arts, Children of the Gospel Choir performed.

Washington Performing Arts, Children of the Gospel Choir performed.

Congratulations on the Award Michael! What will you be doing next?mike_janis.michael.sandra_arkin.dccah.mayors.arts.award

Michael Janis with Kay Kendall, Chair of the Board of Commissioners DCCAH

Michael Janis with Kay Kendall, Chair of the Board of Commissioners DCCAH

Artomatic Baltimore Registration Is Open!

artomaticbaltimoreArtomatic” began as an arts festival in the DC area that was to be “by artists, for everyone” based on the belief that Art builds community. First developed by artists in and around Washington, DC beginning in 1999. 

The next generation is here - Artomatic@Baltimore! The goal is bringing all facets of creativity to Baltimore in one gigantic, multi use space over a series of weeks! Be a part of the first ever Artomatic event of its kind to be held in Baltimore, within the historic Montgomery Park building. 

Historic Montgomery Park

Historic Montgomery Park Building

Visual and Performing Arts Event in Montgomery Park Business Center
November 4th – December 10th, 2016
Open Thursday – Sunday starting at noon
(Closed on Thanksgiving Day 11/24 and Friday 11/25)

Anyone and everyone can be a participating artist at Artomatic@Baltimore.

If you would like to show your artwork at Artomatic@Baltimore, all you need to do is register to secure a space to feature your work.

There is a $100 fee for visual artists at Artomatic@Baltimore. This fee helps Artomatic organize the event and make it awesome for everyone involved. At the time of registration artists are required to sign up for three shifts at Artomatic@Baltimore — a total of 15 hours.

Click HERE to jump to online info.

Glass Art Remembrances of 9/11

On September 11, 2001, nineteen terrorists hijacked four commercial airplanes. In a coordinated attack, these events forever changed the face of modern-day America. Artists, like all of us, struggled to comprehend the unfathomable destruction and loss of innocent life. They responded the way they knew best – through their art.

Eric Fischl's "Tumbling Woman" Eric Fischl. “Tumbling Woman, Study,” 2012, glass, 12 x 18 x 14 in.

Eric Fischl; “Tumbling Woman, Study,” 2012, glass, 12 x 18 x 14 in.

Artist Eric Fischl‘s somewhat controversial homage to the 9/11 victims, was expressed in his “Tumbling Woman” sculpture series. The awkward, unnatural pose — the woman is on her back, her legs lifted and held together to her left side — is meant to evoke the bodies that leapt from the World Trade Center towers. It’s a powerful, striking, vulnerable visual -particularly in glass – even without knowing the reference. Fischl said he felt an urgent responsibility to address the terrorist attack through his work, for the public, to help people make sense of what had happened. That is what art does at its best, he said, adding he saw his sculpture as “a sincere gesture of expressing the pain and vulnerability. Those feelings were part of the tragedy.”

Michael Janis; "The Tower", 2009, glass, glass powder imagery, steel, 19" x 37"

Michael Janis; “The Tower”, 2009, glass, glass powder imagery, steel, 19 x 37 in. (photo by Pete Duvall)

In a similar tribute theme is Michael Janis’ “The Tower” from his tarot series of glass panels. That piece was selected in 2009 to be part the Corning Museum of Glass‘ (CMOG) ‘New Glass Review’. Tina OldknowCMOG’s curator of modern glass from 2000-2014, and the senior curator of modern and contemporary glass from 2014 until her retirement in September 2015, wrote this commentary on the Janis artwork and how the submissions that year showed a narrative influence. She wrote:

“To introduce my narrative category…(t)he more literal representations included the stories told by Debora Coombs, Ian Mowbray, and especially Michael Janis. … On the other hand, a truly big and dangerous event is depicted in Janis’s “The Tower” Tarot Card. Anyone familiar with the tarot knows that the tower, the 16th card of the major arcana, does not bring glad tidings. I was impressed by Janis’s powerful, sad, and appropriate interpretation of this card as a literal reflection of the tragic events of September 11, 2001.”

On this 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, we are reminded that art can document a time and place forever, as it often represents an exploration of the human condition. It’s a memory device that tells a story that is multi-layered, complex and paradoxical. The stories told through art are vulnerable to interpretation and thus keep the moment alive.

Recalling the devastation that came that day is painful for many. Yet we must remember the past, or we deprive ourselves of its lessons for overcoming our present struggles and divisions.

Syl Mathis @ Workhouse Fine Arts Festival


The Workhouse Arts Center in Lornton, VA, announces their 2nd annual Fine Arts Festival with more than 150 of the nation’s best artists. The fair is for 2 days only, at the Workhouse Arts Center in the heart of Northern Virginia – 20 minutes south of Washington D.C.

Syl Mathis, mixed media & cast glass sculpture, 2016

Look for exciting new cast glass/mixed media artworks by WGS artist Syl Mathis to be featured at the art fair!


On Saturday from 12-3p explore the annual education open house with a variety of demos, performances, and hands on activities. The festival will be held rain or shine.

Syl Mathis, cast glass and mixed media sculpture, 2016


September 10/11

11:00 am – 7:30 pm
9518 Workhouse Way
Lorton, VA, 22079