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 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 Bailey 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.

 

The Process: Public Art 900 Thayer in Silver Spring, MD – “Social Fabric”

Public art can strengthen social bonds, especially for culturally diverse neighborhoods.

Corner installation of "Social Fabric" public art at Fenton Apartments in Silver Spring, MD.

Corner installation of “Social Fabric” public art at Fenton Apartments in Silver Spring, MD.

Washington Glass Studio recently completed a public art project in Silver Spring, MD, for a new mixed use development at 900 Thayer Ave

The original 2005 design concept - cast glass panels helped define the architectural entrance to the development.

The original 2005 design concept – cast glass panels helped define the architectural entrance to the “Adele” development.

Washington Glass Studio began creating artwork options for developments on the site, starting in 2005, when the site first was being developed as a residential development called “The Adele”. After a review and approval by Montgomery County Arts Council, the project languished as the real estate market changed.

In 2013, WGS Studio began working with the developers that purchased that project site, Redbrick LMD. Working with the design team, WGS artists were inspired by the rich mixture of ethnic groups in Silver Spring. Imagery and patterns that were based on the cultural fabric and textiles, as well as indigenous weaving and embroidery patterns for tapestries, wraps, blankets and garments.

Fabrics & textiles of the cultures that make up the Silver Spring neighborhoods was the inspiration of the new artwork design for 900 Thayer.

Fabrics & textiles of the cultures that make up the Silver Spring neighborhoods was the inspiration of the new artwork design for 900 Thayer.

 

Artwork on the corner column made up of backlit glass panels would be a colorful reference to the cultures, and add a bright pop of color on the site.

The corner location of the artwork would also frame out the proposed future planned arts development that would be up the road from 900 Thayer, and the Montgomery County Review committee was keen on having the artwork go further – asking if the artwork could be extended all along the ground level of the new development. Happily, Redbrick Developers agreed, and the scope of the artwork was extended along the entire street level and apartment outdoor spaces.

The corner column at 900 Thayer was to have an 11 foot high tower of backlit panels mounted to the surfaces.

The corner column at 900 Thayer was to have an 11 foot high tower of backlit panels mounted to the surfaces.

The project stalled in 2015. In 2017, Chesapeake Realty Partners joined with Redbrick Developer and the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County in moving forward with the property  proceeded with groundbreaking and construction of the development in June of 2018.

WGS Studio was contacted and engaged to fully develop the design. WGS revisited the idea of incorporating cultural textile and fabric patterns would encourage viewers to appreciate the colorful patterns enlivening the streetscape, as well as promoting a message of open-mindedness, promote tolerance and curiosity about other cultures.

The brightly colored hand-screened glass features patterns were artistically based on Ethiopian textiles, African mudcoths, Central American weavings, European folkloric fabric prints, intricate and colorful ancestral weaving designs from Asia, Native American blankets, and Colonial American quilt patterns. Using identity and culture as the main theme of the building’s public artwork, WGS sought to inspire self-reflection, human connection, and conversation.

Teri Bailey and Patricia De Poel Wilberg work on silkscreening the enamel patterns on glass, to be fired in the kilns after.

Teri Bailey and Patricia De Poel Wilberg work on silkscreening the enamel patterns on glass, to be fired in the kilns after.

The Washington Glass Studio team worked on the production of the glass artwork starting in early 2019. Large silkscreen panels were made to allow the patterns to be enameled and fired in the WGS kilns. WGS Co-Director Erwin Timmers worked on the LED design and integration of the glass artwork.

The enameled glass was fired to keep the high contrast color selections vibrant.

The enameled glass was fired to keep the high contrast color selections vibrant.

Over 60 18″ x 18″ panels were made – and were to be mounted in a variety of multi-panel arrangements.

The installation on site began in October of 2019, and as the building occupancy needed the artwork to be completed to allow for certification, a focused WGS team made short work of the outdoor artwork installation. 

Detail of one of the LED illuminated glass panels at 900 Thayer Ave.

Detail of one of the LED illuminated glass panels at 900 Thayer Ave.

WGS Co-Director Michael Janis is a vision in orange as he preps the LED mounts for the glass.

WGS Co-Director Michael Janis is a vision in orange as he preps the LED mounts for the glass.

WGS Co-Director Erwin Timmers sets the final glass artwork panels in the corner column at the 900 Thayer site.

WGS Co-Director Erwin Timmers sets the final glass artwork panels in the corner column at the 900 Thayer site.

The Fenton Apartment corner column artwork has a strong presence in the daytime, with the LED illumination.

The Fenton Apartment corner column artwork has a strong presence in the daytime, with the LED illumination.

Project Details
Location: 900 Thayer Avenue, Silver Spring MD, 20910
Washington Glass Studio Public Art Team: Michael Janis, Tim Tate, Erwin Timmers, Teri Bailey and Patricia De Poel Wilberg.

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.

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.

WGS Glass Lecture “Kiln Casters – A Close Look At The Methods Behind the Madness”

With the success of Debra Ruzinsky’s lecture this past October on the Untold History of Studio Glass – This Saturday, May 31st, is the next installment of glass knowledge!

cast.glass.kiln.washington_DC

Free Lecture – Kiln Casters: A Close Look at the Methods Behind the Madness! (Class 1701)

An exploration of the symbiotic relationship between technique and conceptual thinking as seen through the work of contemporary glass casters.  Slide discussion of artists who focus on cast glass, with an inside look into the techniques they’ve developed to produce their work. The talk will be presented with lots of images and there will be time for discussions.

Speaker: Debra Ruzinsky. Deb received her BA in Design from the University of California at Los Angeles, and her MFA in Glass Sculpture from RIT. She has been working in glass since 1982. She serves on the publications committee of the Glass Art Society, and was Visiting Asst. Professor of Glass at RIT for the 2008-2009 academic calendar year, and has been a visiting lecturer to the Virginia Commonwealth University’s Glass Program. Her work is part of the collection of the Seto City Museum in Seto, Japan, and the Glasmuseet Ebeltoft in Denmark, as well as the RIT Wallace Library Collection.

Saturday, May 31st, from 11am to 12 noon

Email RSVP to washglassschool@aol.com

US Library of Congress’ New Cast Sculptural Glass Doors

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Aerial view of US Capitol on the Mall, Washington, DC. Library of Congress is center bottom of photo.

The Washington Glass Studio (WGS) has started the creation of the new cast sculptural glass doors for the Library of Congress (LOC) in Washington, DC. The design of the project started in 2004, when the Architect of the Capitol (AOC) first asked WGS about advise on their initial proposal to replace the original historic bronze doors of the LOC Adams Building, as the doors required security and changes to be code-compliant. The AOC also sought to reference the artistic heritage of the original doors in this important United States building.

One of the original bronze door pairs by sculptor Lee Lawrie

The original (11′-0″H) bronze doors had functional issues and will be retained in their present hold-open position, recessed into architectural niches. The 16 sculpted bronze doors feature high-relief sculptures by American artist Lee Lawrie, whose best known work is the architectural sculpture on and around New York’s Rockefeller Center. Lawrie’s bronze doors were designed to commemorate the history of the written word, depicting gods of writing as well as real-life Native American Sequoyah. 

Lee Lawrie,  1877-1963,  American sculptor, best known for his architectural work at NY’s Rockefeller Center, especially for the free-standing “Atlas” sculpture.
Ogma and Sequoyah, sculpted bronze figures by Lee Lawrie. Door detail, Library of Congress John Adams Building, Washington, DC.
The original bronze figures depict:

The new door design incorporates cast glass panels mounted within a bronze framework,  incorporating current egress and security requirements. The kilnformed sculptural glass will be made from molds taken off the original door sculptures. Using clear Bullseye glass to cast, the sculpted glass panels will then be laminated to tempered glass for safety. The new glass doors will create a contemporary luminosity to the building entrances, while keeping the character of the historic landmark structure.

original bronze doors - east side  (top)
Design of new bronze and cast glass doors – west side (bottom)

The scale of the project has prompted a collaboration between Washington Glass Studio and Fireart Glass Studio in Portland, OR. The project “dream-team” includes (Bullseye Glass co-founder) Ray Ahlgren, Erwin Timmers, Michael Janis, Tim Tate and Sean Hennessey. 
Master mold caster, Sean Hennessey, has started the project, creating the molds from the existing bronze doors in-situ. Some photos of that process will be posted later.