Baltimore’s K.E.Y.S. Developement Class Goes to Washington (Glass School)

Baltimore’s KEYS Development‘s goal is transformation of urban areas through investment in its youth; youth that see themselves as leaders, entrepreneurs, and ultimately change agents who will usher in a new age of industry in its communities, that state of Maryland and beyond. The mission at K.E.Y.S development is to provide social support and guidance in becoming esteemed leaders with outstanding problem solving and conflict resolution skills.Keys-Empowers-Black-Letters
As part of that goal, this summer sees art glass classes for their students at Washington Glass School. The first of the glass classes took place this week – it started off with a lot of fun!

Instructor Michael Janis demonstrates how to use glass powder to the KEYS class.

Instructor Michael Janis demonstrates how to use glass powder to the KEYS class.

By noon, all the students are busy making their glass masterpieces.

By noon, all the students are busy making their glass masterpieces.

The KEYS Development instructors joing in the fun, making custom stencils.

The KEYS Development instructors joing in the fun, making custom stencils.

Laurel Library’s Grand Opening Features Public Art Sculpture by Washington Glass Studio

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Washington Glass Studio sculpture at the new Laurel Library. Photo by Pete Duvall.

The Washington Glass Studio (WGS) has recently completed installation of a community based site specific public art commission for Prince George’s County Laurel Library. The new building was designed by Grimm + Parker Architects, with the grand opening of the new library scheduled for November 28, 2016. Features of the spectacular new library include an inset floor area in the children’s section where kids will get to peer at a replica velociraptor skeleton through the glass floor. Just a few miles away from the library site is Dinosaur Park, where scientists work to excavate fossils from the early Cretaceous period. Dinosaur imagery was also included as a theme running through the glass artwork panels.

WGS design proposal sketch

WGS design proposal sketch.

WGS was awarded the commission to make the outdoor sculpture at the front of the new library by Maryland’s Prince George’s Arts and Humanities Council (PGAHC). The Art in Public Places Program RFQ sought out artwork that would provide world class artwork for Prince George’’s County residents and visitors. 

WGS proposal for the project was a 17′H internally illuminated glass and steel sculpture that incorporates glass panels made by the community,residents and stakeholders of the Laurel, MD community. The engineering of the steel framework involved detailed analysis of the structure and its components. WGS worked with structural engineer Holbert Apple to ensure the integrity of the design.

Detailed analysis of sculpture was part of the design development process.

Detailed analysis of sculpture was part of the design development process.

Over 100 glass inset panels were made during the series of workshops held at the Washington Glass School. The Baltimore Sun newspaper featured a story by reporter Lisa Philip about the process. 

A series of community glass quilting bees were held at the Washington Glass School for the library during the summer.

A series of community glass quilting bees were held at the Washington Glass School for the library during the summer. Photo by Lisa Philip/Baltimore Sun

 

 

The artwork’s title “Involve Me and I Learn”  is based on a phrase attributed to US Founding Father Benjamin Franklin (who also opened the first US public library). The name references the engagement of the community. The neighborhood and the Laurel Library supporters had joined in making the individual glass panels in workshops at the Washington Glass School.Laurel_Library.artists.washington_glass_school.studio.sculpture.public_art.project.american.great.commission.site_specific.fused.jpg

The resulting variations in each tile’s imagery and technique embody the artist’s concept in bringing the people from the diverse community together to create a cohesive and vibrant sculpture. 

 

 

The artwork inset kiln-formed glass panels express the personality and the  individuality of everyone involved in the project.

The artwork’s internally illuminated kiln-formed glass panels express the personality and the individuality of everyone involved in the project. Photo by Pete Duvall

Project  Information

Artist: Washington Glass Studio 

Design Team: Laurie Brown, Michael Janis, Tim Tate, Erwin Timmers, Audrey Wilson. With Josh Hershman and Pierre Browning.

Structural Engineer : Holbert Apple Assoc Inc 

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Photo by Pete Duvall

Laurel Library
507 7th Street, Laurel, MD 20707

Grand Opening / Dedication – 10:30 AM, Monday, November 28, 2016 – All are invited!

Washington Post Reviews Michael Janis Solo @ Littleton Gallery

The Washington Post published the following review of Michael Janis’ solo show “Echoes of Leaves and Shadows” being exhibited at the Maurine Littleton Gallery through Oct 15. Art critic Mark Jenkins  describes Michael’s skill as “extraordinary. Jenkins also enthuses that Janis’ glass artwork combines “the stateliness of stained-glass windows with the vivacity of pop art”. Have a read of the full text below:

Michael Janis. "Radiance," 2016, glass, glass powder imagery, steel; on view at Maurine Littleton Gallery. (Michael Janis/Maurine Littleton Gallery)

Michael Janis. “Radiance,” 2016, glass, glass powder imagery, steel; on view at Maurine Littleton Gallery. (Michael Janis/Maurine Littleton Gallery)

By Mark Jenkins October 8, 2016

Michael Janis

If Michael Janis worked with pencil or charcoal, his draftsmanship would be impressive. But the D.C. artist draws photorealist portraits with pulverized glass, placing the powder exactly with tiny tools. Which is extraordinary.

Most of the pieces in “Echoes of Leaves and Shadows,” at Maurine Littleton Gallery, include depictions of pretty young women. These gamines, who might be ballerinas or French New Wave stars, are rendered in granulated black glass fused by heat to clear glass sheets. The pieces aren’t just black-and-clear, though. Janis overlays and underlies patches of translucent colored glass, and often adds such 3-D glass elements as butterflies or flower petals. Aqua and orange are common in this array, among other hues. In one picture, an abstract yellow-green swirl contrasts the subject’s slightly darker green eyes.

Janis employs many variations, slicing faces into three equal parts or contrasting them with panels of textured glass. There are ceramic busts garlanded with glass leaves, and portraits embellished with near-opaque peacock- or dark-blue circles. The latter combine the stateliness of stained-glass windows with the vivacity of pop art — half medieval cathedral, half 1960s Vogue.

Michael Janis: Echoes of Leaves and Shadows On view through Oct. 15 at Maurine Littleton Gallery, 1667 Wisconsin Ave. NW. 202-333-9307. littletongallery.com.

Michael Janis Featured in Glass Art Magazine Podcast

Glass Art Magazine has a podcast series aptly named “Talking Out Your Glass” that features interviews and discussions with world-renowned glass artists. WGS’ Michael Janis joins the series as he talks about how he does his glass powder drawings and his upcoming solo show at Georgetown’s Maurine Littleton Gallery.

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click above to listen to podcast

Michael’s solo exhibit titled “Echoes of Leaves and Shadows” features his new glass works and sculptures and opens Friday, September 16, 2016. 

 

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Michael Janis, “Radiance”;2016; fused glass, glass powder imagery, steel; 12.5″ x 12.5″

Michael Janis: Echoes of Leaves and Shadows

Maurine Littleton Gallery

1667 Wisconsin Ave. NW

Washington, DC 20007

 

Sept 16 – Oct 15, 2016

Opening Reception Friday, September 16, 6-8pm

Glass Art Magazine podcast link – click HERE

 

No Dim Bulbs in Lighting Class!

Erwin Timmers instructs one of the lighting class students.

Erwin Timmers instructs one of the lighting class students.

Erwin Timmer’s artistic lighting class these past few weeks brought some serious color to the studio – really brightening up the studio!

Over the three week class, students completed a number of lighting designs, ranging from pendant to wall sconces and table lamps. Great to see how each created functional art that reflected the tastes and aesthetics of each of the artists. This was certainly a class that put forth the effort in the design!

Vibha's glass design was dazzling!

Vibha’s glass design was dazzling!

Students designed and made the glass as well as assembled the mounting hardware.

Students designed and made the glass as well as assembled the mounting hardware.

Louis Comfort Tiffany would have been jealous of the glass created for the light fixture.

Louis Comfort Tiffany would have been jealous of the glass created for the light fixture.

Jerrelee loves her light fixture that relates to her artwork.

Jerrelee loves her light fixture that relates to her artwork.

Debra Ruzinsky Lecture On Kiln Casting Techniques

Debra Ruzinsky talks about the glass work of David Reekie.

Debra Ruzinsky talks about the glass work of David Reekie.

Debra Ruzinsky presented a lecture this weekend at the Washington Glass School on the topic of kiln casting. In her history of studying and teaching around the world gave her heaps of images of world famous glass artists process’ and how they approach mold making, and kiln set-up. 

Deb went into detail of how the molds and intricate details were formed and about long annealing schedules.

Deb went into detail of how the molds and intricate details were formed and about long annealing schedules.

The class loved the opportunity to get the knowledge of the various techniques, and stayed after to chat. Debra’s background in glass and her personal history in art provided a fascinating topic for the after-talk… some of these shocking revelations will be part of some future posts!

 

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!

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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

Michael Janis @ Smithsonian American Art Museum

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Smithsonian’s American Art Museum McEvoy Auditorium will feature Michael Janis starting at 2pm Sunday, May 4th.

Michael Janis was recently featured in American Craft Magazine as “one of a select number of artists in the world creating sgraffito glass art.” The Creative Glass Center of America dubbed him a “Rising
Star of the 21st Century.” His mastery of this difficult technique shows itself in the dreamlike images which he creates by “drawing” with frit powders upon glass which is then fused into painterly panels of
subtle depth and luminosity. This architect-turned-glass-art-star will be made a James Renwick Alliance Distinguished Artist on the weekend of May 3-4.  On Sunday, Michael Janis will present a slide lecture on his work and career at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.michael.janis.smithsonian.american.art.museum

Janis is a Fulbright Scholar and has taught at the UK’s National Glass Centre at Sunderland University. His work is included in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago and numerous private collections. He will be teaching at Penland School of Craft in August.

Who’s A Hottie?

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Robert Kincheloe’s a hottie – over 200 °F (100°C)!

Kiln casting large forms can test the limits of the size of the kilns the glass is being fired inside. Very large glass forms can require more glass than the mold’s reservoir can hold at one time, requiring that additional glass be added during the firing process to fill the mold to the top with glass. Tim Tate is creating a new series – his “Cabinet of Curiosities” and some of the figures are very large.

Tim Tate’s cast glass figures are sometimes over 20″H of solid cast glass.  

Audrey Wilson and Robert Kincheloe suit up to “charge” the flower pot reservoirs inside the hot kilns. 

Audrey gets ready to add the pre-chopped Bullseye glass pieces into the red-hot kiln.
Rob opens the heavy kiln lid and Audrey moves in quickly.
Audrey slides in the glass into the flower pots.
The process is repeated a number of times, each time allowing the kilns to return to hot temps and the green suited elves to cool down.
Rob and Audrey are literally smoking hot artists!

Tim’s work will be featured at Chicago’s S.O.F.A. Art Fair this November in Habatat Galleries space.

The Process – DC Shorts Film Awards

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The DC Shorts Film Festival – the largest short film event on the East Coast. This is the festival’s 9th year, they are showing 140 films from 27 nations — and expect hundreds of filmmakers and thousands of audience members to mix, mingle and explore the art of short cinema. The festival is the largest audience-driven collection of short films in the USA. The DC Shorts Film Festival turns the spotlight on truly independent short films, created by new and established filmmakers in an era when the art of filmmaking is opening to all. 

The Washington Glass Studio makes the glass awards given to the winners of the competition, and the steps to make the award are the subject of today’s posting.

 

Based on the film festival logo, the imagery is drawn in frit powder onto flat glass sheets.

 

The pattern made of glass powder is kiln-fired to the glass surface.

Rob Kincheloe sets up a precise angle within the kiln for the previously fired glass to slump over.

The slump drop of the glass creates one piece award that has the base integrated.

 

Audrey Wilson rubs enamel paint into the white kilncast film reels to bring out the texture of the glass.

 

The slumped awards are ready for the cast glass elements to be attached with UV glue.

The production of the awards fill the tables of the studio. The finished awards are boxed and mad ready for delivery to the festival HQ. 

When you go to the DC Film Festival gala award receptions – be sure to cheer for the awards themselves!

DC Shorts is a project of the DC Film Alliance. The DC Film Alliance serves and strengthens the media arts in the greater Washington DC region by serving as a bridge between the myriad of media arts organizations in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.