Weekend with Bernstein! JRA Distinguished Artist Alex Bernstein

The James Renwick Alliance’s (JRA) annual Distinguished Artist Series (DAS) brings notable craft artists from around the country – and the season started off great with Alex Bernstein as the distinguished artist in Glass. 

DAS Alex Bernstein begins his workshop demo at the Washington Glass School. photo by Diane Charnov

DAS Alex Bernstein begins his workshop demo at the Washington Glass School. photo by Diane Charnov

Alex took the JRA workshop attendees along a journey from billet to awesome in about 3 hours! 

Alex outlined his process with copious notes on his process. photo Laurie Brown

Alex outlined his process with copious notes on his process. photo Laurie Brown

The JRA Distinguished Artist walked the audience thru his signature process of “Bernstein-ing” his work, and everyone loved it!

Alx Bernstein outlines his glass grinding process with notes about the grit sizes used. photo Diane Charnov

Alx Bernstein outlines his glass grinding process with notes about the grit sizes used. photo Diane Charnov

Alex carved fine slices into the glass slab, much like a stone carver would approach a marble block. photo by Diane Charnov

Alex carved fine slices into the glass slab, much like a stone carver would approach a marble block. photo by Diane Charnov

Alex then masks off the glass before he "Bernsteins" his glass. photo by Diane Charnov

Alex then masks off the glass before he “Bernsteins” his glass. photo by Diane Charnov

With great flourish -using a metal grinder and showering all in a hail of sparks - Alex fuses bits of steel into the exposed glass area and patina's the metal finish. photo by Diane Charnov

With great flourish -using a metal grinder and showering all in a hail of sparks – Alex fuses bits of steel into the exposed glass area and patina’s the metal finish. photo by Diane Charnov

Alex's finished demo piece, titled "Blue Mountain" was later auctioned off to support the DAS program.

Alex’s finished demo piece, titled “Blue Mountain” was later auctioned off to support the  JRA DAS program.

The next day, Alex Bernstein presented a talk at the American University Museum Katzen Arts Center, where he talked more about his work, history and how he balanced his concepts, process, career and family. An incredible story! 

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Alex connected with the audience on a personal level.

 

Smithsonian Curator Abraham Thomas talks with Judith Schaechter about her influences, including high culture,  pop culture... and the Ramones.

Smithsonian Curator Abraham Thomas talks with Judith Schaechter about her influences, including high culture, pop culture… and the Ramones.

The glass weekend kept going strong – later in the day, at the Smithsonian Renwick Museum, glass artist Judith Schaechter talked about her work and influences.

The Smithsonian also honored the JRA’s Paul & Elmerina Parkman for their years of service to the glass art world as they prepare to move to their home in New York.

SAAM Director Stephanie Stebich honors the Parkmens.

SAAM Director Stephanie Stebich honored the Parkmens.

This weekend will take while to assimilate all the information and craft exuberance that took place! Alex did achieve the Awesomeness promised.

The JRA mission is to advance scholarship, education and public appreciation of craft art as well as promoting individual achievements of excellence and innovation in the craft field.  The JRA is made from a vibrant group of art enthusiasts, collectors, artists, educators, students and art professionals who share a passion for contemporary American craft.  For more info – click HERE to jump to the JRA site.

WGS Hosts James Renwick Alliance Distinguished Artist Alex Bernstein Workshop

Alex Bernstein, Morning Balance - 26x26x5" - Cast and cut glass, fused steel

Alex Bernstein, Morning Balance – 26x26x5″ – Cast and cut glass, fused steel

The James Renwick Alliance’s annual Distinguished Artist Series brings notable craft artists from around the country to provide insight into their work. Each Distinguished Artist weekend includes a Saturday workshop and free Sunday public lecture at which the artist will discuss their technique, background, artistic influences, and career. 

Alex Bernstein

Alex Bernstein

The JRA named Alex Bernstein as one of this year’s Distinguished Artist and he will be at the Washington Glass School for a demo workshop on Saturday, September 23rd, 2017 from 9:30am-12:30pm where Alex will discuss the making of his artwork and demonstrate some of his cold-working techniques. Participants in the workshop will participate in the design the sculpture Alex will make at the studio. The morning begins with a brief meet-and-greet with the artist over coffee and pastries. Workshop participants will have the opportunity to attend a potluck dinner with the artist on Saturday evening. On Sunday, September 24th, 2017, the JRA will provide a free public lecture by the artist at American University’s Katzen Arts Center from 10 AM – 11AM.

Alex Bernstein, "Black Mountain 2", Cast & cut glass, fused steel

Alex Bernstein, “Black Mountain 2″, Cast & cut glass, fused steel

Award winning artist Alex Gabriel Bernstein grew up in a creative environment with access to many of the artists of the American studio glass movement. As the child of two established glass artists, William and Katherine Bernstein (Billy is one of the founding members of the Glass Art Society), the beautiful surroundings of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Western North Carolina where they lived played almost as much of a part in his inspired upbringing as did the breadth of teachers around him.

Alex will talk about his family’s influence, how he pushed the boundaries in glass sculpture technique and how he found his voice.

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) is a vibrant group of art enthusiasts, collectors, artists, educators, students and art professionals who share a passion for contemporary American craft.  JRA members enjoy a diverse year-round schedule of programs including, social events, educational lectures and tours, and art-inspired excursions.

The JRA is committed to advancing scholarship, education and public appreciation of craft art as well as promoting individual achievements of excellence and innovation in the craft field.  As an independent non-profit organization, the JRA has provided more than $3 million for acquisitions, exhibitions, public programs, and publications to Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery – our nation’s showcase of contemporary American craft.

Alex Bernstein Distinguished Artist Workshop:
Saturday, September 23  |  9:30am – 12:30pm
Washington Glass School  |  3700 Otis St, Mt Rainier, MD 20712
$50 members  |  $60 non members

To register for Alex Bernstein workshop at the Washington Glass School – click HERE.

James Renwick Alliance Distinguished Artist Series Features Helen Frederick

The James Renwick Alliance hosts artist
Helen Frederick at the Museum

Sunday, May 21, 2:00-3:00 pm

jra.helen.frederickHelen Frederick’s artwork explores the use of language and media in creating pulp prints, artists books and paintings.

As part of their Distinguished Artist Series, the JRA hosts artist Helen Frederick for a lecture in the Abramson Recital Hall (across from the AU Museum) on Sunday, May 21 from 2-3 pm. The lecture is free and open to the public. No registration required. Frederick will lead a workshop on paper-making the day before, Saturday May 20 from 9:30 am – 12 pm. Advanced registration required. The JRA welcomes AU Museum Associate Level Members to register at their Member’s price.

Register Now or Learn More about the JRA series.

James Renwick Alliance ‎Foon Sham Lecture – Distinguished Artist Series

Foon Sham, Escape I, Tunnel, 2016. Pine, 14 x 62 x 5 ft.

Foon Sham, Escape I, Tunnel, 2016. Pine, 14 x 62 x 5 ft.

Artist Foon Sham’s focus is on wood in its many forms.  Using small bits, he creates large scale vessels which take on  shapes like tornados or mountains, baskets, or even a giant vase-like piece which viewers can sit inside.  His smaller works echo these larger structures, exploring the intersection of natural vs. manmade, permanence vs. instability, geometric vs. organic. Foon is a professor at University of Maryland, and exhibits nationally and internationally.

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) presents the annual Distinguished Artist Series with “local treasures” featuring craft artists who contribute significantly to the richness of the artistic environment in our area. Foon Sham will discuss his international background and experience and his body of work in wood and other media. Foon’s workshop will highlight some techniques for creating his wood pieces. 

The lecture will focus on his international background and experience and his body of work in wood and other media.

Foon Sham, Escape I, Tunnel, 2016. Pine, 14 x 62 x 5 ft.

Foon Sham, Escape I, Tunnel, 2016. Pine, 14 x 62 x 5 ft.

For more information on Foon’s work: www.foonsham.com

The Where & When


Workshop Venue: On the campus of University of Maryland

Foon Sham workshop map(free parking available)
Parren J Mitchell Art/Sociology Building ( BLDG #146),
College Park, MD
Rm 1311, wood shop

Price:
JRA Member $50
Non-Member $60

Lecture Date: Sunday, April 23, 2017
Time: 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Lecture Venue: American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center

jra-logoThe James Renwick Alliance is an independent national non-profit organization that celebrates the achievements of America’s craft artists and fosters scholarship, education, connoisseurship and public appreciation of craft art. Founded in 1982, the Alliance fulfills its mission through public programs, educational trips, publications, recognition of craft artists, and financial support of museums and other non-profit organizations, including the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. 

James Renwick Alliance Distinguished Artist: Donald Friedlich

Don Friedlich, "Navel Orange Brooch" cast glass

Don Friedlich, “Navel Orange Brooch” cast glass

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) is committed to advancing scholarship, education and an appreciation of craft art as well as promoting individual achievements of excellence and innovation in craft. The JRA’s mission is to promote education, support and appreciation of craft. Each year, the JRA sponsors its Distinguished Artist Series, where craft artists prominent in their fields conduct workshops and give lectures. Each of the “Distinguished Artist” weekends include a workshop and the artist presents their work in the newly renovated Grand Salon at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery.

On June 4th & 5th, Donald Friedlich will present and talk about his innovative contemporary jewelry that incorporates cast glass.

Donald Friedlich has been an innovative jeweler for over 40 years. Lauded for his stark, designerly forms and, most recently, for his luminous jewelry pieces in glass and gold, his work can be found in the collections of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Corning Museum of Glass. 

Don’s work involves a wide array of techniques in this new jewelry – including artwork inspired by food, which combines four of his passions: food, humor, glass and jewelry. He literally is doing “lost celery casting” and “lost asparagus casting”. By casting these mundane materials in glass Don hopes that the viewer will see them in a new light and realize what beautiful forms they are. 

Don Friedlich, "Asparagus Brooches" cast glass

Don Friedlich, “Asparagus Brooches” cast glass

Some of the other designs are press molded and are in line with his recent series inspired by water and geometry. 

GENERAL INFORMATION:

The JRA Distinguished Artist Workshop will take place on Saturday, June 4th from 9:30am to 12:00. There are still some spaces in the Donald Friedlich workshop on June 4. He will be demonstrating press molding hot glass, creating molds and cold-working techniques. For more information, go to the linkhttps://www.jra.org/events/donald-friedlich

Location of workshop: DC Glassworks

5346 46th Avenue
Hyattsville MD 20781

The Sunday, June 5th lecture is free and open to the public and will take place from 2:00pm – 3:00pm in the newly renovated Grand Salon at the Renwick Gallery.

JRA Distinguished Artist Sibylle Peretti Workshop and Lecture @ Smithsonian Renwick Gallery

Sibylle Peretti; “Siblings”; glass; 15″ x 22″ x 10″, 2005. What stands out in artist Sibylle Peretti’s artwork are the intense images of children in nature – part dream and part fairy tale.

As part of the James Renwick Alliance “Distinguished Artist” series – glass artist Sibylle Peretti was in Washington, DC for a workshop and presentation at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery.

#RENWICKGALLERY

Artist Sibylle Peretti demonstrates her techniques at the JRA Distinguished Artist workshop held at Weisser Studio.

The JRA gets to pull their thumb out!

The JRA gets to pull their finger out!

Sibylle’s workshop – held at Weisser Studio was great fun, the attendees were able to see how Sibylle creates the molds and forms for her enigmatic artwork. 

The JRA held dinners in her honor  - and many were able to talk with the artist about her inspirations, process and history. 

Michael Janis introduces JRA Distinguished Artist Sibylle Peretti

Michael Janis introduces JRA Distinguished Artist Sibylle Peretti

On Sunday, May 22, Sibylle Peretti presented her works to the audience that gathered at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery. The Renwick Gallery has had such a tremendous upturn in attendance with the “Wonder” exhibit – that even with the constant rain, a sizable crowd listened in rapt attention.

The JRA has had so many great artist presentations – we can’t wait for the next one! Click HERE to jump to the James Renwick Alliance Distinguished Artist Series page.

#RENWICKGALLERY

Sibylle Peretti talking about her work at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery

James Renwick Alliance Presents Artist Sibylle Peretti @ Smithsonian Renwick Gallery

Sibylle Peretti; "Land Mine"; slumped, engraved, painted and silvered glass, paper; 60" x 80" x 0.5"; 2015

Sibylle Peretti; “Land Mine”; slumped, engraved, painted and silvered glass, paper; 60″ x 80″ x 0.5″; 2015

The James Renwick Alliance (JRA) was created as an independent national nonprofit organization to celebrate the achievements of America’s craft artists and to foster scholarship, education and public appreciation of their art.  Founded in 1982, the Alliance helps support our nation’s showcase of 20th century American craft, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC. 

 figurative glass art, feminist art

Sibylle Peretti; “Twins” cast glass, 18″ x 24″ x 10″; 2010

As part of the JRA Distinguished Artist Series, on  the JRA will welcomes glass sculptor Sibylle Peretti to speak about her work and inspirations at the Renwick Gallery – home to the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s collection of contemporary craft and decorative art.

Sibylle Peretti at work.

Sibylle Peretti at work.

Sibylle Peretti is an artist who grew up surrounded by traditional glassmaking. Trained as a glass designer at the State School for Glass Making in Zwiesel Germany, she learned techniques of enameling, engraving, cutting and designing glass. She expanded the range of her artistic voice as she received an MFA from the Academy of Fine Art in Cologne and was trained as a Glass Designer at the School for Glassmaking in Zwiesel, Germany. Sibylle Peretti lives and works in both New Orleans, LA and Cologne, Germany. Sibylle often works collaboratively with her husband – artist Stephen Paul Day

Sibylle Peretti; "To Know A Hawk" cast glass, 16" x 17" x 13", 2013

Sibylle Peretti; “To Know A Hawk” cast glass, 16″ x 17″ x 13″, 2013

Her work has won numerous awards and endorsements, including grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation and the Joan Mitchell Foundation as well as the 2013 United States Artist Fellowship for her glass sculptures and multimedia collages, which combine photography & drawing with surface interventions such as engraving, mirroring and glass slumping. Children and nature, as symbols of innocence and promise, are the central themes in Sibylle’s work.

Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY; Carnegie Museum of Art (Pittsburgh, PA), Museum of American Glass (Milleville, NJ), Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Canada), Museum für Kunsthandwerk (Frankfurt, Germany), Hunter Museum (Chattanooga TN), Speed Museum (Louisville,KY), and 21c Museum (Louisville, KY).

The JRA invites the public to join Sibylle Peretti at the newly renovated Smithsonian Renwick Gallery as she talks about her work and career.

Lecture Date: Sunday, May 22, 2016
Time: 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Lecture Venue: Grand Salon, Renwick Gallery

The JRA’s mission is to promote education, support and appreciation of craft. If you’d like to learn more about the group, please see the JRA website.

JRA Distinguished Artists Einar & Jamex de la Torre

einar-jamex-de-la-torre-brothers.jra.jpg

EINAR AND JAMEX DE LA TORRE

Glass and mixed media artists Einar and Jamex de la Torre will speak at the Smithsonian American Art Museum as part of the James Renwick Alliance’s Distinguished Artist Series at 2 PM on Sunday, May 3.

Mexican-born artists Einar and Jamex de la Torre are brothers and artistic collaborators, who moved to the United States from Guadalajara, Jalisco in the early 1970′s. Leaving behind the academic, religious and social rigors of an all-boys Catholic school in 1960′s Guadalajara, the de la Torre brothers ended up in the small Southern California surf town of Dana Point, where they discovered the unbridled joys of co-ed public schools.

bros.delaTorre.washington.glass.schoolWhile attending California State University at Long Beach in the 80′s, they studied sculpture and glass blowing, during which time the artist-brothers began a flame-worked glass figure business. This business was quickly eclipsed when their artistic collaboration began in earnest in the late 1980′s with small mix media works. In the late 1990′s, they began to do large-scale sculptural installations, eventually branching out into commissioned site-specific and public art projects.

de-la-torre-.washington.glass.school

Currently, the brothers live and work on both sides of the San Diego-Baja California border, enjoying a bi-national life style that very much informs their art. Einar and Jamex de la Torre have worked, taught and exhibited both nationally, as well as internationally. Their distinctive three-dimensional work can be found in galleries, museum collections, Museum catalogs, as well as in various public art installations. They are recent recipients of the Joan Mitchel foundation award and the Louis Comfort Tiffany foundation award.

On Saturday, May 2 at 10am, the artists will give a workshop featuring a demonstration of their hot glass techniques at DC Glassworks. To sign up for the demonstration go to: James Renwick Alliance registration page.

Artists Talk – Free and Open to the Public

Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015

Time: 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Location: The MacMillan Education Center (1st floor) at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

For more information, visit their website: www.delatorrebros.com

Smithsonian American Art Museum Features Michael Janis

Smithsonian Distinguished Artist Michael Janis

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

a.3.rosenthal.glass.scraffito_class.washington.janis.mike.art.new

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!

 

James Renwick Alliance names WGS’ Michael Janis as Distinguished Artist in Glass 2014

The James Renwick Alliance(JRA) is an independent national nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing scholarship and education on contemporary American craft. 

The JRA assists the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in adding to its permanent collection of American craft of artistic significance and superior workmanship, supports scholarly research in contemporary American craft, sponsors public educational activities, and pursues other activities in support of the studio craft movement. Each year the JRA sponsors a “Distinguished Artist Series” when craft artists prominent in their fields conduct workshops and give lectures. The lectures are co-sponsored by the JRA and the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery.

Michael Janis will talk about his work at the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) in early 2014.

For the 2013/2014 season, the JRA have chosen Washington Glass School Co-Director Michael Janis as the Distinguished Artist for his glass artwork.
Michael will be giving a lecture and presentation at the Smithsonian in early 2014, with details to be finalized soon. Congratulations Michael! We look forward to posting the details.

2012/2013 JRA Distinguished Artist in Glass – Andy Paiko talks at Smithsonian. photo by Miriam Rosenthal