Happy Holidays from Washington Glass School and Studio

Tis the Season!

All of us at the Washington Glass School & Studio Wish You and Family a Joyous Holiday Season! And a Happy Healthy New Year!

Artists and Educators from the Washington Glass School

(L-R) Patricia De Poel Wilberg, Erwin Timmers, Christina Helowicz, Nancy Kronstadt, Kate Barfield, Tim Tate, April Shelford, Michael Janis, Trish Kent and John Henderson. Not pictured: Graciela Granek, Sean Robinson, Diane Cabe, Gabrielle Morris, Kyle Crosby, and Daphne Matyas.

2022 Art Basel/Art Miami Features Washington Glass School Artists

Washington Glass School artists are prepping spectacular glass/mixed media artwork to be presented at Context Art Miami – at Alida Anderson Art Projects . New art works by WGS artists Michael Janis, Christina Helowicz, Tim Tate, Erwin Timmers, along with artworks by Lenny Campello, Tony Porto, J Jordan Bruns and Steve Wanna, Marinela de la Hoz and others will be on exhibit at CONTEXT Art Miami Art Fair, space A29.

CONTEXT Art Miami, presented by Art Miami, continues to create and push boundaries on the conversation about contemporary art, The 2022 edition will showcase works from 75 innovative galleries from more than 20 countries, including Japan, Turkey, Australia, France, South Korea and Chile, among others. CONTEXT Art Miami will kick-off during Miami Art Week with an invitation-only VIP preview on Tuesday, November 29 and run through Sunday, December 4, 2022.

Tim Tate: Reflections on Studio Practice

Glass Sculptor and Artist Tim Tate looks back on 20 years of creating a community. He recently put together some of his observations on well, how did we get here?

Artist Tim Tate

“I had been raised in a household filled with craft materials. I rarely saw my mother’s hands empty, always creating something. I inherited this love. I spent my early adult years being trained in the methods revolving around studio glass while attending the 2 weeks to 2-month workshops of Penland, Pilchuck, Corning, Pittsburg, etc. (I had no money to attend grad school …though I yearned for Cranbrook). These years of varied workshops and practitioners was the perfect way to obtain a broad outlook on the entire field. We founded the Washington Glass School in 2001 with very specific goals. Let me see if I can make this clear.

Tim Tate & Joyce Scott work on a new collaborative sculpture at the Washington Glass School.

1). We wanted to be something other than a traditional studio glass shop. From the beginning we realized we wanted a much broader approach; something that reflected the mission of education centers like the Crucible in Oakland and Penland in NC. We embraced mixed media work from the beginning with varied classes in kiln formed glass, steel, electronics, encaustics, etc. Our idea was not to in any way denigrate the rich history of studio glass, but to live just outside of those confines to see what would happen. To step slightly away from the 20th century.

Tim Tate
Tim Tate “We Rose Up”, 2017, Cast objects, mirrors, and LED’s, 32 × 32 × 4 in.

2). As a gay man in glass, it was apparent that diversity was sorely lacking in every way in the glass world. So we did outreach and advertised our classes in many publications that went to diverse populations, rather than wait for these populations to approach us. This worked very well. Even now we go to the Facebook pages of different neighborhoods to show our class schedules.

Einar and Jamex de la Torre at Washington Glass School 2015
The Brothers De La Torre visit the Washington Glass School in 2015.

3). We have embraced social media in every way possible, from individual and school Facebook and Instagram pages (where we post regularly) to administering a Facebook discussion group. This group is called “21st Century Glass/Conversations and Images/Glass Secessionism” and maintain over 8000 members from 97 countries.

With William Warmus we came up with the original concept of “Glass Secessionism”…to step slightly away from the recognized canon of 20th century glass and to create as much dialog and critical analysis as possible. There have been over 1.5 million words written and over thousands of images shared on this page focusing almost entirely on that theme.

In 2008, Artomatic held an international glass show.

4). We participated in many local shows here in the DC area, such as the spectacular Art-O-Matic show that truly put us on the map. We also curated many shows over the years to include local emerging artists. I have served on a dozen boards and juried dozens of shows and grant applications to stay in the loop and form a community bond. There are 3 Co-Directors here, all sharing a similar mission….to create a large regional, national and international community to foster new growth within our field.

2009 Glass Workshop at Washington Glass School. L-R Cheryl P Derricotte, David Cook, Nicole Puzan.

5). Our first class was on Sept. 13, 2001…. a difficult day in history to start anything being right after 9/11. We thought no one would even attend the first classes. But we discovered something else….no one cancelled. It appeared that while the purchase of art slowed to a trickle around the country, the creation of art thrived. Our first class was filled with artists who wanted to make narrative work about the devastation of that event. From that moment on we embraced narrative work with all our hearts. Works about political events, social injustices and inequalities were common within our sculptural classes, and certainly in my own works. We have now been in operation over 20 years, with over 6000 students. 60% of those were and are women, we have a large population of BIPoC students and we have worked with hundreds of LGTBQ students. We are so very proud of this fact.

My purpose for serving on boards right now is to focus on the building of communities as an artistic practice. I want to take a slight step away from academia as these institutions can become elitist, and I want to be non-elitist as we have been from the beginning. I also like regional boards that focus in the mid-Atlantic.

My personal practice had been deeply imbedded in the world of glass galleries and museums, though frequently as an outsider. I have stepped away from this in the last few months. I have moved towards the fine art world once again, as I had started there. It feels great to go back to my roots, surrounded by a community that reaches far beyond anything we ever anticipated.” – Tim Tate, October, 2022

Joyce J Scott @ The Washington Glass School!

Sharing a laugh in the Glass Studio. L-R Tim Tate, Joyce Scott, Cecelia Wichmann

The legendary artist – Joyce Scott– who was awarded the 2016 MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” is making artwork in the Glass School. Joyce is a printmaker, weaver, sculptor, performance artist, and educator, but she is probably most well known for her work in jewelry, beadwork, and glass. Her art reflects her take on all aspects of American popular culture, her ancestry, and her community.

Artists Tim Tate & Joyce Scott working in the front studio kilns.

Joyce is working with Tim Tate – creating new work for Joyce’s retrospective at the Baltimore Museum of Art. She was joined with Cecilia Wichmann – Associate Curator of Contemporary Art at the Baltimore Museum of Art.

WGS Co-Director Michael Janis describes to Joyce Scott the “one that got away” … in the glass school.
L-R Christina Helowicz, Tim Tate, Joyce Scott, Cecelia Wichmann

Michael Janis Finalist in 2022 Contemporary Craft Prize

Michael Janis, “Allowing Our Past to Become Part of Ourselves” detail, 2022, fused glass, glass powder imagery. Photo by Pete Duvall.

17 national and international finalists have been selected for this biennial exhibition in glass art, featuring newly created, innovative works.

Michael Janis glass art - title "Allowing Our Past to Become Part of Ourselves" 60"H x 40' W fused glass, glass powder imagery aluminum

Glass is itself a transformation: created when ordinary sand encounters extreme heat. In this breathtaking exhibition, glass is transformed again, this time by 17 contemporary artists from across the globe. The resulting work pushes the boundary of traditional craft techniques and takes glass from the realm of the ordinary to the extraordinary.

Transformation 11: Contemporary Works in Glass is Contemporary Craft’s 2022 Elizabeth R. Raphael Founder’s Prize juried exhibition. The winning artist and their work will be announced and presented at the public opening of the exhibition on Friday, September 9, 2022, where they will receive a cash prize. The 2022 prize will be awarded in the category of glass, and must meet the requirement that it has been made within the last 12 months and addresses the theme of “transformation.” Seventeen contemporary artists from across the globe explore creative concepts and innovative approaches in their use of the glass medium, with the winning artist sending additional works to demonstrate the breadth of their work.

The 2022 Raphael Prize finalists are: Dean Allison, Pittsburgh, PA; Eunsuh Choi, Rochester, WI; Donald Friedlich, Madison, WI; Michael Janis, Washington, DC; Lauren Kalman, Detroit, MI; David King, Danville, KY; Eriko Kobayashi, Carbondale, IL; Weston Lambert, Tacoma, WA; Patrick Martin, Emporia, KS; Hisayoshi Muto, Yatomi, Aichi, Japan; Aya Oki, San Bernardino, CA; Miroslava Ptackova, Zlín, Zlínský kraj, Czech Republic; David Schnuckel, Rochester, NY; Michaela Spruzinova, Ústí Nad Labem, brná, Czech Republic; Ben Wright, Stanwood, WA; Ayano Yoshizumi, Everard Park, SA, Australia; and Hoseok Youn, Toledo, OH.

The jury for the 2022 prize includes Anna Rothfuss, Project Development Manager, Derix Art Glass Consultants, LLC U.S., Portland, OR; Heather McElwee, Randi & L. Van V. Dauler, Jr. Executive Director, Pittsburgh Glass Center, Pittsburgh, PA; Alexandra Raphael, enameller, London, England; Catherine Raphael, metalsmith and writer, Pittsburgh, PA; Rachel Saul Rearick, Executive Director, and Kate Lydon, Director of Exhibitions (retired), Contemporary Craft, Pittsburgh, PA

Contemporary Craft, 5645 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Contemporary Craft hours: Mon-Sat: 10 AM – 4 PM

September 9, 2022 – March 18, 2023

This opening is free and open to the public.

ABOUT CONTEMPORARY CRAFT

Contemporary Craft presents contemporary art in craft media by regional, national, and international artists. Contemporary Craft offers cutting edge exhibitions focusing on multicultural diversity and contemporary art, as well as a range of artist-led studio workshops, community engagement programs, and a store. Located at 5645 Butler Street in the Upper Lawrenceville neighborhood of Pittsburgh, PA. For more information, visit www.contemporarycraft.org

Janis & Tate @ Toronto’s Sandra Ainsley Gallery

Michael Janis & Tim Tate at Toronto’s Sandra Ainsley Gallery June 4 – July 30, 2022

Toronto, Canada’s famed Sandra Ainsley Gallery present the narrative glass artworks by WGS Co-Directors Tim Tate and Michael Janis. The show, titled “One Story is Not Enough” featured works by each artist as a solo, and a number of their collaborative wall murals.

Michael Janis’ imagery in frit powder is reflected in the gallery’s piano surface.

When Michael Janis and Tim Tate met, almost 20 years ago, they discovered a shared fascination of narrative sculpture- one that seeks to arrive at an image that is both unflinchingly candid in physical representation and psychologically evasive. Working together, they are interested in the simultaneous read of an immediately recognizable image that asks the viewer to linger over history and meanings that unfurl more slowly. Mark, line and material become an extension of touch in the act of representation. The relationship of hand to subject, negotiated through the material, can elicit a response of both visual and tactile.

“The Poetry of Everyday Objects” by Michael Janis & Tim Tate, 2021; Size:6H x 6W’; Cast Glass

With these confines they create work in many techniques, but if you stand slightly back and see their history a huge thread of interconnected stories weave through their work from day one. The beauty comes into focus and the viewer sees the edges of a world not dissimilar to this one, but so much more thoughtful.

Detail – “The Poetry of Everyday Objects”, Michael Janis & Tim Tate

They present this glimpse into that alternative world, seemingly unstuck in time somewhere between past and future.

Tim Tate, Lenticular series, 2022, each panel 41″H x 41″W, lenticular prints

Sandra Ainsley Gallery
The Warehouse
100 Sunrise Avenue, Unit 150
Toronto, Ontario Canada M4A 1B3

Michael Janis on Art Clinic Online Saturday, June 25th.

On Saturday, June 25th, WGS Co-Director Michael Janis is the guest artist presenting on online talk for the Art Clinic Online @ Glen Echo’s Stone Tower Studio.

sgraffito glass imagery of figure
Michael Janis; “Current State”, 2020. Kilnformed glass, glass powder imagery, 4 panels – each 20” x 30”

The Art Clinic Online (ACO) community aims to create a supportive arts environment in an online setting. The ACO features online presentations where members can ask them questions about their vision and create a forum for the equal exchange of art ideas and art information as well as opportunities.

If you are interested in joining the online presentation, email Mariana for the zoomlink- mkastrin@gmail.com

One Story Is Not Enough – Tim Tate & Michael Janis in Toronto’s Sandra Ainsley Gallery

Sandra Ainsley Gallery, Canada’s leading glass art gallery, presents a collaborative exhibition from Washington Glass School artists Tim Tate and Michael Janis titled “One Story is Not Enough“. The exhibition will feature their individual works along with joint pieces that highlight the narrative sculpture.

L-R: Tim Tate, Sandra Ainsley, Daniel Ainsley at the opening of “One Story Is Not Enough”.

Mark, line and material become an extension of touch in the act of representation. The relationship of hand to subject, negotiated through the material, can elicit a response of both visual and tactile.

Michael Janis’ kilncast glass L-R “The Color of Shadows” & “The Place Between Memories”

With these confines, Tim and Michael create works in many techniques, but if you stand slightly back and see their history, a huge thread of interconnected stories weave through their work from day one. The beauty comes into focus and the viewer sees the edges of a world not dissimilar to this one, but so much more thoughtful. They present this glimpse into that alternative world, seemingly unstuck in time somewhere between past and future.

On Friday, June 17, at 1 PM (Eastern time), the Art Alliance for Contemporary Glass (AACG) will hold an online zoom MeetUp and Tim Tate and Michael Janis will tour exhibition and talk about their careers and process. Join the AACG to watch it live, or else catch it on YouTube after Friday.

Click Here to register.

Sandra Ainsley Gallery, 100 Sunrise Ave, North York, ON M4A 1B3, Canada

2022 Venice Biennale Showcases DC Area Artists

Michael Janis Tim Tate Chris Shea venice biennale 2022 glasstress
“There’s A Big Hole In The Sky” – Collaborative sculpture by Tim Tate, Michael Janis, and Chris Shea. 

The Venice Biennale is an international art exhibition featuring architecture, visual arts, cinema, dance, music, and theatre that is held in the Castello district of VeniceItaly every two years during the summer. This year’s Venice Biennale includes a collateral event – ‘Glasstress’ – held at the historic Berengo Studios in Murano, Italy.

The 59th International Art Exhibition features a sculptural collaboration between DC glass artists Tim Tate, Michael Janis and Brandywine metal sculptor Chris Shea, representing the USA.

21st century glass sculpture art
Detail of Tate,Janis,Shea artwork showing cast glass and metalwork .

Chris Shea’s incredible metal work frames out Tim Tate’s lush fields of cast glass elements (detailed figures, flowers, insects) and in center, a glass sgraffito panel by Michael Janis.

A central concern in “There’s a Big Hole in The Sky” is that viewers need to abandon their apathy towards climate change. This monumental sculpture brings to light the effects of global warming on the earth as most areas will be facing frequent flooding. Despite the growing evidence of climate change, and humanity as the driver of that change, there remains a hardcore 20 percent or so that reject the whole notion of it and a healthy percentage that remain unconvinced that humans are causing it. And on top of those dismal statistics, many believe that climate change does not represent a threat to them. The artwork is an invitation to understand, to act, and to prepare. But if political solutions to climate change don’t materialize soon, it may also be an invitation to come to terms with loss.

washington glass school murano italy art sculpture
Image of installation at Berengo Studios in Murano, Italy.

From Biennale Press Release 

GLASSTRESS 2022

2 JUNE – 27 NOVEMBER 2022

BERENGO ART SPACE FOUNDATION

Venice, 2022 

At the same time as the 59th Venice Biennale, the seventh edition of GLASSTRESS, scheduled from June 2 to November 27, 2022, brings together a group of important contemporary artists from Europe, the United States, Latin America, Africa and China in an ambitious exhibition that explores the infinite creative possibilities of glass.

The works will be housed in the Berengo Art Space Foundation in Murano, an old abandoned furnace transformed a few years ago into an evocative exhibition space. On display will be works by artists who have already collaborated and exhibited at GLASSTRESS with Berengo Studio, such as Ai Weiwei, Jimmie Durham, Tony Cragg, Monira Al Qadiri, Thomas Schütte, as well as first-time attendees Vanessa Beecroft, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, Tim Tate, Paloma Varga Weisz and eL Seed, among others.

GLASSTRESS is a project by Adriano Berengo dedicated to promoting new connections between contemporary art and glass. Starting from its debut in 2009 as a side event of the Venice Biennale, over the years GLASSTRESS has made dozens of internationally renowned artists and designers passionate about the traditional craft of Murano glass blowing, who have tried their hand at creating suggestive and innovative works in glass with the support of the masters of Berengo Studio.

GLASSTRESS 2022 – ARTISTS

NEW ARTISTS

Vanessa Beecroft (Italy), María Magdalena Campos-Pons (Cuba), Judy Chicago (United States), Chiara Dynys (Italy), eL Seed (France), Leandro Erlich (Argentina), Ryan Gander (Great Britain), Michael Janis (United States), Alexander Evgenievich Ponomarev (Russia), Laurent Reypens (Belgium), Liam Scully (Great Britain), Chris Shea (United States), Paloma Varga Weisz (Germany), Osman Yousefzada (Great Britain).

RETURNING ARTISTS

Ai Weiwei (China), Monira Al Qadiri (Kuwait), Ayman Baalbaki (Lebanon), Tony Cragg (Great Britain), Jimmie Durham (United States), Jan Fabre (Belgium), Josepha Gasch-Muche (Germany), Kendell Geers ( South Africa), Marya Kazoun (Lebanon / Canada), Brigitte Kowanz (Austria), Karen LaMonte (United States), Tomáš Libertiny (Slovak Republic), Massimo Lunardon (Italy), Federica Marangoni (Italy), Prune Nourry (France), Anne Peabody (United States), Jaume Plensa (Spain), Laure Prouvost (France), Thomas Schütte (Germany), Sean Scully (United States), Wael Shawky (Egypt), Lino Tagliapietra (Italy), Tim Tate (United States) , Koen Vanmechelen (Belgium), Robert Wilson (United States), Rose Wylie (Great Britain), Erwin Wurm (Austria).

DC’s MLK Jr Library Features Washington Glass Studio on Public Art

View of Green Community Gateway by Washington Glass Studio

The District of Columbia Public Library (DCPL) is a dynamic source of information, programs, books and services, among them is their Makers Program, that includes a Fabrication Lab. The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library’s “Fab Lab”, complete with 3D printers, a laser cutter, soldering equipment, other machines is part of a new movement of public libraries embracing the “maker movement.” DCPL’s maker program is the largest of its kind in a public library, as they see the program as a force to bring together makers, artists, and creative people of all types and from all fields and backgrounds, encouraging cross-disciplinary cooperation. As part of the public engagement, the DCPL Makers & DIY Program is hosting a series of artists lectures at the newly refurbished MLK Memorial Library auditorium.

Image of Community workshop at Washington Glass School.

On Saturday, May 21, 2022, from 1:00pm – 2:00pm, Michael Janis, co-director of the Washington Glass School, will give a lecture on how the Washington Glass Studio created the “Green Community Gateway” with art made with the help of the community in Ward 7.

The “Green Community Gateway”, public art sculpture marks the symbolic entrance to the Kenilworth/Parkside section of DC’s Ward 7. Through a series of glass “quilting bees”, Washington Glass Studio brought together neighborhood residents, students of the high school, and the staff of the newly constructed Unity Healthcare facility to make glass art that would become an integral part of the arch.

This lecture program will take place in the auditorium at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, 901 G St. NW, Washington, DC 20001. Register at bit.ly/labsclasses

The renovated Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, DC, originally designed by Mies van der Rohe, the landmark library was rejuvenated by Mecanoo and OTJ Architects.