Report from Chicago SOFA

Chicago's Navy Pier was host for the 2015 SOFA expo.

Chicago’s Navy Pier was host for the 2015 SOFA expo.

As the 2015 edition of the Sculpture Objects Functional Art + Design fair wound down the red dots were spread around the exhibition spaces at Chicago’s Navy Pier Festival Hall that featured glass. The broadened scope of works included more painting and photography as part of the show’s evolution.

Tim Tate talks about his work at Habatat Galleries space.

Tim Tate talks about his work at Habatat Galleries space.

Washington Glass School artists Tim Tate, Michael Janis, Allegra Marquart, Audrey Wilson and Sean Hennessey were featured at Michigan’s Habatat Gallery, Maurine Littleton and Alida Anderson Art Project spaces that featured works by internationally acclaimed artists.

The art expo also featured talks by the artists about their work and notable critics such as William Warmus and American Craft Editor Monica Moses hosted lively discussions on the future of collecting. 

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Editor-in-Chief of American Craft, Monica Moses, with curator/critic/art consultant Bill Warmus presenting a talk about the future of collecting @ SOFA Chicago 2015.

One of the best activities for this visitor was to wander amongst the incredible artwork and strike up a conversation with the artists that you had a craft-crush and obtain real insight into their work and process. Some of the works truly left the viewer gobsmacked – with details and depths to the work that jpeg photos simply could not show. Although the show was just a long weekend, I could have kept finding new works to be mesmerized in each aisle. 

Michael Janis talks about his work at SOFA Chicago

Michael Janis talks about his work at SOFA Chicago

I can’t wait till next year’s iteration! But until then – have a look at some of the glass works photos in the Washington Glass School’s flickr album – click HERE to jump to SOFA Chicago album. Or- want to see a short local PBS (WTTW) vid? Click HERE.

Detail of "The Gun Eater" by Carmen Lozar.

Detail of “The Gun Eater” by Carmen Lozar.

 

Carmen Lozar's "The Gun Eater" at Bender Gallery.

Carmen Lozar’s “The Gun Eater” at Bender Gallery.

Pittsburgh’s SCC’s “Mindful” Exhibit: Exploring Mental Health through Art

Michael Janis;"Echoes" detail; fused glass, glass powder imagery; 2015

Michael Janis; “Echoes” detail; fused glass, glass powder imagery; 2015. photo by AnythingPhotographic

To raise awareness and increase understanding of mental illness, The Society for Contemporary Craft (SCC) located in Pittsburgh, PA, will be mounting a “socially engaged art experience”  opening September 18th through March 12, 2016. 

The  traveling exhibition titled Mindful: Exploring Mental Health through Art is designed to break down societal stigmas and offers an opportunity to encounter and understand mental health through the lens of contemporary craft. Featuring more than 40 works created by 14 contemporary artists in the project’s main exhibition, and WGS artist Michael Janis’ glass artwork will be highlighted.

One in four adults lives with a mental health condition, yet this common illness often remains hidden behind a wall of secrecy and isolation. 

Presenting contemporary art in craft media by international, national and regional artists since 1971, the Society for Contemporary Craft offers cutting edge exhibitions focused on multicultural diversity and non-mainstream art. The SCC remains one of the nation’s only non-profit institutions focused on contemporary craft..

Learn more about the Mindful project by visiting the SCC website for the exhibit: www.exploremindfulart.com

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The Society of Contemporary Craft

Mindful: Exploring Mental Health through Art

2100 Smallman St, Pittsburgh, PA 15222

For more info:

info@contemporarycraft.org

or call 412.261.7003.

Washington Glass School At S.O.F.A. Chicago 2014

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Every fall – for the past 20 years – Chicago, IL hosts the internationally acclaimed Sculpture Objects & Functional Art Fair (aka SOFA Chicago).  

The 21st SOFA Chicago will be held November 7 – 9, 2014 at Navy Pier’s Festival Hall where masterworks from top international galleries and dealers from numerous countries will exhibit. Opening night gala preview will be held Thursday, November 6.

Washington Glass School is represented by artists Michael Janis and Allegra Marquart at Maurine Littleton Gallery and Sean Hennessey and Tim Tate are exhibiting at Habatat Galleries Space.

Allegra Marquart, "On The Bus", 2014,  cast glass, enamel OA dimensions 48" L x  24" H.

Allegra Marquart, “On The Bus” (detail), 2014, cast glass, enamel; OA dimensions 48″ L x 24″ H. Photo by Anything Photographic

Allegra Marquart will present a number of her new wall installations. Her new works are not strictly narrative but relate to etchings the artist made years ago when she first moved to the city and began interpreting what she saw on the streets with humor and an eye for juxtaposing disparate situations and individuals.

Sean Hennessey, "The Fur-Suit of Happiness" Cast Glass, Paint, Video (Photo by Anything Photographic)

Sean Hennessey, “The Fur-Suit of Happiness” Cast Glass, Paint, Video
(Photo by Anything Photographic)

Sean Hennessey will be showing his cast glass/ mixed media panels at Habatat Galleries. His new works integrate electronics and videos into the panels.

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Tim Tate, “The Healing Polyopticon”, Poly-Vitro, Glass, Video

Tim Tate will be showing his installation “The Healing Polyopticon” – a 5 ft wide installation consisting of 16 video pieces in varying sizes of cast black frames. Each video is in the form of an eye blinking; each eye different. Surrounding this cluster of 16 video frames are cast black flowers that fills out the 5 ft wide circle . The work is based on a terminal diagnosis he received 30 years ago – and he imagined that he was being kept safe by those who passed before him – all keeping an eye on him thru portals. In this sculpture he portrays people who had effected his life in a positive way…keeping him from passing over, making him safe; imbuing him with self healing energy. This powerful sculpture will at Habatat Galleries space.

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Michael Janis, “Breathing In The Quiet” and “Waiting For The Lover’s Words”, fused glass powder imagery, glass, steel. (Photo by Anything Photographic)

Michael Janis will be showing a number of new works at Maurine Littleton Gallery space. The American Institute of Interior Designers (ASID) chose his work as part of their picks for SOFA Selectswhere highlighted pieces chosen by noted curators, designers, and critics give viewers of the fair way to navigate the huge show.

If you are going to the show – be sure to stop by and visit with the artists – all will be at the Chicago Fair!

Last Minute Prep for International Glass + Clay Show – Panic?

We are bracing for a new British Invasion! The Brits are arriving to set-up the collaborative arts exhibition at Pepco’s Edison Gallery. Arrangements are now being mad for workshops talks and demos to be part of the exhibit, organized by Artomatic and the DC Sister City – part of Washington DC’s Office of the Secretary.

International Glass + Clay
March 1 through March 22, 2013
Opening Reception is Friday, March 1, 2013, 6-8 PM
Edison Place Gallery
702 Eighth Street (between G and H Street)
Washington, DC

To bring an exhibit of this size to the US Capitol, there are a number of sponsors and partners for the International Show:

I Heart American Craft Council

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Love is in the air

I ♥ Glass

In time for Valentines, the Feb/March 2012 issue of American Craft magazine (published by the American Craft Council) features Washington Glass School Director Michael Janis answering the romantic question: “Who’s Your Platonic Craft Crush”. The new issue also has some great articles about Harvey Littleton and the Studio Glass Movement, and an article about ceramic sculptor Cristina Córdova.

For some reason tho, Michael is made to be yellow. Very yellow. I am (overly) Curious Yellow.

Michael Janis looking either very jaundiced or he’s Bart Simpson’s twin, Hugo.

And just who is Michael Craft Crushing on? Its no secret that it is glass & ceramic artist Christina Bothwell.

The American Craft Council is the voice for craft in America, celebrating the remarkable achievement of the many gifted artists working in the media of clay, fiber, glass, metal, wood and other materials. Programs through which the Council supports the field include the bimonthly magazine American Craft. Click HERE to jump to the Craft Council website.