WGS Featured Artist: Carmen Lozar

CLICK IT! Featured Artist: Carmen Lozar

Carmen Lozar‘s glass sculptures inspires and provoke imagination. Telling stories has always been her primary objective. Some narratives are sad, funny, or thoughtful but artworks are always about celebrating life. Carmen lives in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois where she maintains a studio and is a member of the art faculty at Illinois Wesleyan University. She has taught at Pilchuck Glass School, Penland School of Craft, Pittsburgh Glass School, Appalachian Center for Crafts, The Chrysler Museum, and the Glass Furnace in Istanbul, Turkey. She has had residencies at the Corning Museum of Glass and Penland School of Craft. Although she travels abroad to teach and share her love for glass – most recently to Turkey, Italy, and New Zealand – she always returns to her Midwestern roots. 

Washington Glass School blog catches up with Carmen as her work is part of the WGS Contemporary online exhibit “CLICK-IT!” 

Carmen Lozar

Carmen Lozar

Washington Glass School (WGS): Describe your artwork method/process.

Carmen Lozar: I work with rods and tubes of borosilicate glass at a torch.  Flameworking lends itself to small intimate pieces, the type I most enjoy making. The process requires concentration, years of skill building and many, many generous mentors who are willing to share their knowledge. 

Caremen Lozar, "Bubble Gum", 2019, Flameworked glass, found object, 3"x 2"x 6"

Caremen Lozar, “Bubble Gum”, 2019, Flameworked glass, found object, 3″x 2″x 6″

WGS: Describe your work in the show and highlight aspects that the viewers should understand about the work.

Carmen Lozar: The work is the show is meant to be intimate and accessible, highlighting human follies in a lighthearted way. The bubble gum pieces are about the sticky messes we continually put ourselves in but also the ridiculous and stretchy nature of glass as a material. To me, much of the work is both funny and sad. 

The ketchup and mustard piece, Fight, is about the continual small spats that my daughters engage in daily. I know that they love each other and work well together but this does not stop them from ongoing sibling rivalry. This piece makes light of their arguments knowing they will pass and, in a way, preserving my sanity.

Carmen Lozar, "Fight", Flameworked glass and found object. 3"H x 8"L x 2"D

Carmen Lozar, “Fight”, Flameworked glass and found object. 3″H x 8″L x 2″D

WGS: How have you handled the Covid lockdown?

Carmen Lozar: I have been oscillating between enjoying a quiet summer and completely freaking out. There is so much to process and digest that I am sure the landscape of what we make will change as a result. I believe an entirely new aesthetic will result as a product of the pandemic and unrest.

Image from Carmen Lozar's sketchbook.

Image from Carmen Lozar’s sketchbook.

WGS: Do you do a lot of planning in your work – or is there an element of chance while working?

Carmen Lozar:  I do a lot of planning before I begin a new artwork, usually beginning with several drawings in my sketchbook. I usually stick to the drawing/idea pretty closely although if there are too many repetitive parts in the piece I will simplify. I have a short attention span and making the same objects over and over, while I love the way it looks, is difficult for me.

WGS: if you were not an artist – what would you be?

Carmen Lozar: An allergist.

WGS: What is your rule of thumb in determining when a work is finished?

Carmen Lozar: You get a crazy wonderful rush of adrenaline that you cannot find anywhere else!

Click here to jump to Carmen Lozar’s work in CLICK-IT!
Click HERE to jump to the show.

WGS Featured Artist: Erwin Timmers

CLICK IT! Featured Artist: Erwin Timmers

Erwin Timmers is the co-founder of the Washington Glass Studio and Washington Glass School. Originally from Amsterdam, he moved to California and graduated from Santa Monica College for Design Arts and Architecture. In 1999 he moved to the Washington DC area and since then his sculptural artwork has been on display in Zenith Gallery, Fraser Gallery, and Gallery Neptune. Erwin was named the Montgomery County, MD Executive’s Award Outstanding Artist of the Year in 2018.

His approach to art is multifaceted, incorporating metalwork, innovative lighting and glass design. He teaches glass, lighting, sculpture, and metal work. Industrial salvage and recycling are recurring themes in his work, which he sees as crucial parts to the interaction with one’s surroundings. Recently, the Artisan 4100 – an apartment community opening along Route 1 in Brentwood, MD – commissioned Erwin Timmers to create a major glass and light installation for the new building lobby.

Artist Erwin Timmers installs Artisan 4100 Building artwork commission.

Artist Erwin Timmers installs Artisan 4100 Building artwork commission.

Washington Glass School blog catches up with Erwin as his work is part of the WGS Contemporary online exhibit “CLICK-IT!”.

Washington Glass School (WGS): Describe your artwork method/process.
Erwin Timmers: I cast objects in recycled glass. For this series I have used discarded packaging material, from which I take molds in plaster. The glass then heats up in an electric kiln, melts and takes on the shape of this mold. To finish I chop, and trim the glass and weld the metal frame.

Erwin Timmers, "Patterns of Containment V" cast recycled glass

Erwin Timmers, “Patterns of Containment V” cast recycled glass

WGS: Describe your work in the show and highlight aspects that the viewers should understand about the work.

Erwin Timmers: The work features single-use plastic wrappings that viewers may recognize. The grid format formalizes the display of “trash” as art and then I use grids within each frame as well. I hope to give viewers a moment of pause while contemplating the shapes and patterns.

Erwin Timmer: detail "Patterns of Containment"

Erwin Timmer: detail “Patterns of Containment”

WGS: How have you handled the Covid lockdown?

Erwin Timmers: Initially COVID was like snow days we hadn’t had, but with great weather. That was before any financial pressure came into play. It was motivating to see the air pollution worldwide go down, I wish it could stay like that. But at the same time the single use plastic pollution is increasing, giving me even more art base materials…

WGS: What artwork/event has moved you and got you thinking about your own work?
Erwin Timmers: The current civil crisis has been deeply moving. It caused me to rethink and redevelop the direction of my hands symbol series.

WGS: if you were not an artist – what would you be?
Erwin Timmers: Epidemiologist 

Erwin Timmers suits up in his PPE gear to work in the studio.

Erwin Timmers suits up in his PPE gear to work in the studio. Or tend the studio bee-hives.

WGS: Do you do a lot of planning in your work – or is there an element of chance while working?
Erwin Timmers: I plan the general idea, but often new ideas and aspects emerge as I work. I try to incorporate these, and I can then evaluate whether they work or not.

WGS: What is your rule of thumb in determining when a work is finished?
Erwin Timmers: When I sign it, it is done…

Click here to jump to Erwin Timmers work in CLICK-IT!
Erwin’s work is part of the companion exhibit/fundraiser – “Artists for Racial Justice” Click HERE to jump to the show.

WGS Featured Artist: Sean Donlon

CLICK IT! Featured Artist: Sean Donlon

Sean Donlon has been drawn to the challenges of glass manipulation. Sean earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Craft and Material Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University in 2012. He has traveled all over the United States and internationally to Lauscha, Germany and Murano, Italy to study lost glass techniques and to work with other glass artists. Among his distinguished honors, Sean has been the recipient of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts fellowship, was awarded Craft + Design’s Best in Show, and was recently featured in American Craft Magazine. Sean’s work has been exhibited in the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, and the Chrysler Museum. He is currently living and working in Richmond, VA.

Sean Donlon

Sean Donlon

Washington Glass School blog catches up with Sean as his work is part of the WGS Contemporary online exhibit “CLICK-IT!”.

Washington Glass School (WGS): Describe your artwork method/process.

Sean Donlon: I use flameworking, a glassblowing technique, to create these teapots. Within the manipulation of glass and fire a unique vessel is born.

Sean Donlon, "Tantric Tea Time"; glass / mixed media

Sean Donlon, “Tantric Tea Time“; glass / mixed media

WGS: Describe your work in the show and highlight aspects that the viewers should understand about the work.

Sean Donlon: We are surrounded daily by functional objects; beauty everywhere is easily overlooked when it is hidden in plain view. Becoming obsessed with this practical object turned into an opportunity to make sense of the world.

The teapot became a symbol in my eyes, one that could be recognized by all people. Throughout history teapots have been used as a canvas for expression through its maker or utilizer. This makes the teapot a greater symbol – one that can connect everyone on the principle of taking a moment to wind down, interact, tell stories, or internally reflect.

This inanimate object becomes vibrant and alive when juxtaposed in a foreign environment; every teapot manifests its own personality in these installations. Reflecting light off of each other and playing with their environment, these teapots, in every viewing angle become their own story. 

WGS: How have you handled the Covid lockdown?

Sean Donlon: It has been difficult, and a storm of emotions. I have family who is going through treatment for a terminal cancer and covid isn’t making that experience any easier.

I run a shared studio space with other artists, and it has been a big change. In the pace of the workplace, and to make sure everyone is on the same page in our adapting to this pandemic.  Safety has always been our top priority, I was very excited to see how everyone came together to make things operate smoothly.  It hasn’t been easy, but I have realized so many small things I love about life. Between the sound of water pouring on coffee beans for cold brew, and how light can change so much in a few seconds throughout the day.  Its made me so grateful to be able to reconnect with the world around me again.

I was thinking there would be a large flow of creative energy, but it has actually been hit and miss.  Its made my work slow down but in a great way.  New work from this is in the works and I am excited to share it when its ready… but its kind of hush hush till then.   

WGS: if you were not an artist – what would you be?

Sean Donlon: I discovered glass when I was working as a tire installer.  I had a car dropped when I was working on it and almost lost my hands and it was that day, I decided to switch to glass full time… I wanted to keep using my hands to create art and have not looked back since that decision.

Sean Donlon's surreal teapots.

Sean Donlon’s surreal teapots.

WGS: Do you do a lot of planning in your work – or is there an element of chance while working?

Sean Donlon: Much of the planning starts with the concept and design.  Then trying to figure out what tools to make is important to each piece.  Everything gets a custom-made component to make the mounting and shaping seamless.  Then the raw fun starts.  When doing the hot glass part, it is planned – but then I do allow room to have the natural avenue of chance and error to come into play!

WGS: What is your rule of thumb in determining when a work is finished?

Sean Donlon: (When the hot glue is dry… JK). I wish this was an easy answer but its not.  I often know when I am working the glass on the torch when its done.  There will be this moment where it just speaks to me in a way that i see if i change anything else it’ll be too much or throw off the balance of the piece.  Once this is done I still have to install and mirror the work so its still a long process after the glass is made.

My rule of thumb is when the work has the right gesture, narrative, flow, and I am happy with it.  I won’t let something out that I am not please with, and it takes failed works to make the great ones.

 

Click here to jump to Sean Donlon’s work in CLICK-IT!

 

American Glass Guild 2020 Conference in Baltimore, Hon!

The American Glass Guild 2020 Conference in Baltimore. MD.

The American Glass Guild 2020 Conference in Baltimore. MD.

The American Glass Guild (AGG) will be holding their 20th Anniversary Conference at the Maritime Conference Center in Baltimore, Maryland May 7-9.

The Baltimore conference is a great place to meet people in the glass arts, to share ideas, techniques and experiences, with the planned glass art auction, artwork exhibition and more. Demos and workshops by international artists including Narcissus Quagliata and Judith Schaechter!– Talks featuring Shawn Waggoner, Tim Carey, Judith Schaecter, Ken Leap and Nancy Gong! WGS Co-Director, Michael Janis, will be a keynote speaker!

The Annual Live AGG Auction raises funds for the James Whitney Memorial Scholarship. Since 2007 the Whitney Memorial Scholarship has handed out over 125 scholarships for glass education. Recipients receive full or partial scholarships for various glass educational opportunities, such as conferences and workshops, or ongoing educational efforts.

The American Glass Guild (AGG) is a non-profit organization whose core mission is to work toward building an environment within the craft that both cultivates novices and facilitates experienced craftspeople and artisans to attain a higher level of expertise. The AGG’s intention is to support and provide speakers for public lectures and seminars, encourage spirited debates, and initiate fact-based research.

Click HERE for more online information.

Pate De Verre Class Fun!

This weekend’s pâte de verre class was a great success! 

Instructor Teri Bailey demonstrates how to apply color frit powder into specific areas for the class.

Instructor Teri Swinhart (Bailey) demonstrates how to apply color frit powder into specific areas for the class.

Pâte de verre is a kilncasting method that literally means “paste of glass”. The general premise is to mix frit granules with some sort of binder such as gum arabic, then apply the glass to the inner surface of a negative mold.

Teri Bailey demonstrates proper frit application.

Teri Swinhart demonstrates proper frit application.

The Pâte de verre students made plaster molds in which they would cast the glass.

The Pâte de verre students made plaster molds in which they would cast the glass.

Lively discussion on ways to kilncast glass sculpture was explored by the class.

Lively discussion on ways to kilncast glass sculpture was explored by the class.The students all loved the process and can't wait til the firings are out of the kilns. The students all loved the process and can’t wait til the firings are out of the kilns.

 

Peppermill Village at Night – The City of Lights!

Peppermill Community Center public art by Washington Glass Studio and the Peppermill/Landover community.

Peppermill Community Center public art by Washington Glass Studio and the Peppermill/Landover community.

Cassi Hayden, the Senior Visual Media Photographer for The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) was at Peppermill Village Community Center covering an event recently and found the artwork (made by Washington Glass Studio) in front to be exceptionally beautiful!

Detail of the internally illuminated glass panels made with the Peppermill community as part of the public artwork.

Detail of the internally illuminated glass panels made with the Peppermill community as part of the public artwork.

Cassi took some shots attached high-res files for your use.  All photos in this posting by: M-NCPPC/Cassi Hayden

The artwork reflects well in the glass of the new center - and on the community that inspired the creation!

The artwork reflects well in the glass of the new center – and on the community that inspired the creation!

Click HERE to see the public art sculpture in the daytime and how the work came to be!

Tim Tate & Michael Janis Collaborate

The Collaboration…..

"All That Is Solid Melts Into Air" Michael Janis & Tim Tate; 2019, fused glass, cast glass, sgraffito imagery, steel; 6'-0" x 9'-0"

“All That Is Solid Melts Into Air” Michael Janis & Tim Tate; 2019, fused glass, cast glass, sgraffito imagery, steel; 6′-0″ x 9′-0″; Photo credit: Pete Duvall.

Michael Janis and Tim Tate have worked together as Co-Directors of the Washington Glass School and Studio for more than 15 years, working on their own individual work, teaching and creating a functioning arts studio in the nation’s capital. 

Michael Janis creates imagery with crushed glass powder his signature "sgraffito" technique.

Michael Janis creates imagery with crushed glass powder his signature “sgraffito” technique.

This summer, the two artists decided to build on that rich and storied history by collaborating on an impressive piece that would both combine and challenge their individual, and strongly, narrative work. 

Tim Tate works on the glass panels for the collaborative artwork.

Tim Tate works on the glass panels for the collaborative artwork.

 “All Things Solid Melt Into Air” is the title of their 6’ x 9’ wall installation, comprised of 54 separate kiln cast glass insets. To create this work, the artists made 42 separate bas-relief plaster molds, 12 sgraffito glass powder drawings, 12 lost wax glass castings and 4 months to produce this spectacular and monumental work.

Detail of "All That Is Solid Melts Into Air"

Detail of “All That Is Solid Melts Into Air” Photo credit: Pete Duvall

Referencing mankind’s interaction with nature as the artwork main theme, Tim and Michael set about to produce an experience that people will want to engage with…on a tactile basis.  One can explore each of the olive tinted glass tiles to feel sentiments and poetic visions of the artists, or step back and just enjoy the piece as one would enjoy a bird’s song. They are both immensely proud of this work, which will be shown at the Habatat Prime exhibit during SOFA Expo in Chicago, (October 31, 2019 – November 3, 2019).

Habatat Prime
Location: Roosevelt Collection @ 1023 S. Delano Court East, Chicago, IL 60605
Habatat will have transportation to and from the space that is 3 miles from the Pier.

Smithsonian Museum Curators Visit Washington Glass School

Smithsonian Renwick Museum Curator-In_Charge Nora Atkinson is compelled to touch the artwork by Michael Janis and Tim Tate on her visit to Washington Glass School.

Smithsonian Renwick Museum Curator-In-Charge Nora Atkinson is compelled to touch the artwork by Michael Janis and Tim Tate on her visit to Washington Glass School.

Nora Atkinson, Curator-in-Charge of the Smithsonian Renwick Museum and Robyn Kennedy, Smithsonian Renwick Chief Administrator pay a visit to the studio to have a look at the new collaborative glass installation by Tim Tate & Michael Janis.

Artist Michael Janis talks about the process and inspiration that he and artist Tim Tate used to make the stunning, collaborative artwork.

Artist Michael Janis talks about the process and inspiration that he and artist Tim Tate used to make the stunning, collaborative artwork.

The two Renwick Museum leaders wanted a preview of the work titled, “All That Is Solid Melts Into Air” before it heads up to Chicago as part of Habatat Prime pop-up exhibit that is part of SOFA Expo in a few weeks (Oct 31-Nov 3).

Artist Erwin Timmers points out the features of his thoughtful glass sculptures to SAAM Curator Nora Atkinson and Chief Administrator, Robyn Kennedy.

Artist Erwin Timmers points out the features of his thoughtful glass sculptures to SAAM Curator Nora Atkinson and Chief Administrator, Robyn Kennedy.

And a walk thru of the Washington Glass School looking at the artists work – what great way to spend a spectacular Friday in DC.

Michael Janis describes his sgraffito glass technique to Smithsonian's  Robyn Kennedy and Nora Atkinson as they tour the work on exhibit.

Michael Janis describes his sgraffito glass technique to Smithsonian’s Robyn Kennedy and Nora Atkinson as they tour the work on exhibit.

 

Habatat Galleries’ 47th International Invitational

Habatat Galleries’ 47th International Glass Invitational Award Exhibition
Thursday, May 2, 2019 to Friday, Jul 5, 2019
Grand Opening May 4th 2019 8:00 pm
Grand Opening to the public is May 4th at 8:00 pm!

Michael Janis; "Intersectionality", kilnformed glass, sgraffito powder technique; 2019

Michael Janis; “Intersectionality”, kilnformed glass, sgraffito powder technique; 2019

Celebrating the life of the artist – Habatat Galleries invites all to the 47th Glass International Award Exhibition taking place at the Habatat Galleries Complex in Royal Oak Michigan. This weekend is the glass highlight of the year and is not to be missed!

Tim Tate; "Dutch Still Life Study"; black light and cast objects; 2019

Tim Tate; “Dutch Still Life Study”; black light and cast objects; 2019

This three day weekend includes an auction, dinners, museum tours, demonstrations, artist talks, the POPnLOCK Show, artists, parties, the largest annual international glass exhibition in the world and much, much more! The theme for the 47th Glass Invitational is An Artist’s Life. Each artist was asked artist to provide a glimpse into their life as an artist and share their thoughts. The catalog is available online HERE – (scroll down and click on artist images for details.)tate.1

Habatat Galleries was established in 1971 in a suburb of Detroit, Michigan. It is the oldest and largest art gallery in the United States devoted exclusively to artists working with glass as their medium. Washington Glass School artists Michael Janis and Tim Tate are again featured in the Invitational Exhibition.Michael_janis.glass.art.large.sculpture.usa.habatat.fused_powder.frit.sgraffito.narrative.imagery

The Exhibition continues through July 5th of 2019.

Public Art for Peppermill Community Center Brings Residents to Washington Glass School

Peppermill Village's new community center will feature a glass and steel sculpture inset with glass artwork made by the community.

Peppermill Village’s new community center will feature a glass and steel sculpture inset with glass artwork made by the community.

Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), Department of Parks and Recreation awarded Washington Glass Studio the commission to design, fabricate and install a work of art in the form of a sculpture that has the potential to become a landmark for the Peppermill Community. The new soaring glass and steel structure will be internally illuminated and feature glass panels made by the Peppermill community. The first of three planned community glass-making workshops took place this weekend at the Washington Glass School.

The Washington Glass School was filled with residents of Peppermill Village, MD - all making glass and having a great time!

The Washington Glass School was filled with residents of Peppermill Village, MD – all making glass and having a great time!

We will post more photos of the workshops and the progress of the sculpture as the work proceeds!

Everyone got into expressing themselves in glass and telling their story for the public art sculpture.

Everyone got into expressing themselves in glass and telling their story for the public art sculpture.

Co-Director Erwin Timmers enthuses about fused glass to the Peppermill group.

Co-Director Erwin Timmers enthuses about fused glass to the Peppermill group.