London Affordable Art Fair & Imagery In Glass

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2012 London Affordable Art Fair held at London’s Battersea Park.


The first big workshop, Bas-Relief dry plaster casting at the UK’s National Glass Center had gone well (phew!) The Sunderland arts organization, Creative Cohesion, was participating in the London Affordable Art Fair and had invited Tim Tate and I to exhibit our work in the contemporary art show. Which we readily agreed. Tim, my wife Kay & I jumped on a train down to London, and joined the exhibitors at the fair that had opened a couple of days earlier.


Kay Janis watches the North Sea whizz by on the train to London.

Crowd watching is part of the fun of an art fair and at London AAF it included celebrity-sightings of Johnny Depp and Joanna Lumley (Joanna looks loverly, BTW)


Tim Tate’s artwork was featured in the Creative Cohesion Booth.

L-R Dinner with the Creative Cohesion artists Kay Janis, Tim Tate, Robyn Townsend, Joanne Mitchell, Roger Tye, Anne Tye


Tim Tate tuckered out on return train trip.

Our time in London was too short, soon we were back on the train to Sunderland, and preparing for my multi-day class “Imagery in Glass” that was held in the Architectural Glass Studio of the National Glass Center.


Outlining the basics for getting detailed imagery into fused glass.

Showing the different glass powder tools and how an artist can manipulate imagery.

The master level class is tasked with creating a number of sample panels.

Students drew inspiration from the view over the river.

The first firing of glass powder imagery.

Reviewing fused glass samples with class.


Discussing options for creating effects within the layered imagery.

Jeffrey Sarmiento created a component layer for the class demo project – the artwork suggests creating bridges between the art communities.

University of Sunderland Artists Part 2:

Jeffrey Sarmiento

Jeffrey Sarmiento was recently appointed Reader in Glass at the National Glass Center at the University of Sunderland. A Filipino-American artist, he holds an MFA in Glass from the Rhode Island School of Design. His research has led him to work widely in the US and Europe, having been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship Denmark. He was also a finalist for the Louis Comfort Tiffany Award and the Bombay Sapphire Prize. His most recent project is a 600kg glass map, permanently housed in the new Museum of Liverpool.

Liverpool Map Jeffrey Sarmiento and Inge Panneels, 2010

Bombay Encyclopedia

Jeffery Sarmiento talks about his work “Ossify”

Ossify 2010 British Glass Biennale Award Runner up


Emotional Leak Jeffrey Sarmiento & Erin Dickson, 2011

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Cate Watkinson

Cate Watkinson trained in 3-D Design, Glass with Ceramics at Sunderland Polytechnic.After leaving college Cate worked in Cambridge and the Channel Islands before returning to the North East to set up her architectural glass studio. Cate continues to run her business, Watkinson Glass Associates, while teaching at the University of Sunderland.

Over the years Cate has built on her experience, optimizing developments in new technologies, including new developments and techniques in construction. She has successfully completed a varied range of commissioned projects from glass public seating in city centers to a 22’ high sculpture for a shopping mall. From a stained glass window for Newcastle Cathedral to a laminated glass screen for the Arrivals Hall at Newcastle International Airport in the UK.

Other research activities include exploring the use of text and light through the public art commission entitled `Total Policing’, a glass and stainless steel sculpture situated at the front of the new head quarters for Northumbria Police in North Tyneside.


Total Policing


Baltic Business Quarter Public art/seating made with recycled glass.


Lookout

Next Up – Creative Cohesion artist development talk, dinner with the Uni Board, and more great UK artists!

Fulbright Scholars at University of Sunderland

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Tim Tate gets the class working in the kilns at the UK’s National Glass Center.


Our Fulbright schedule began to fill the days.The first workshop we held at the University of Sunderland’s National Glass Center: “Affecting Sheet Glass – Bas-Relief Imagery in Glass” was filled.
The technique of “dry plaster casing” was outlined, and firing schedules were converted from Fahrenheit to Celsius – along with converting all dimensions from imperial to metric. (Why did the US decide to not join the world in the 70′s when we were supposed to go all metricationed?)


Tim Betterton sets up the kilns for dry plaster casting.

After the firing, its like Christmas day as the students eagerly retrieve their kilnformed glass sculptures.

Removing the still warm glass from the kiln.

The fusing classes in the bas-relief method were a great success. It was great to work with students from many different levels at University, from foundation through PhD. 

We were able to meet a number of incredibly talented artists that were associated with the University and their work was so strong that we will post some of the work and profiles about the artists in each of the next few blog updates:

Kevin Petrie

Dr Kevin Petrie leads the Glass and Ceramics department at the University of Sunderland. Kevin studied Illustration at the University of Westminster and Ceramics and Glass at the Royal College of Art. He holds a PhD in ceramics and print from University of the West of England, Bristol. Kevin’s first book ‘Glass and Print’ established the crossovers between Glassmaking and Printmaking. The book forms the cornerstone of a period of research that established the cross over between two largely separate strands of creative activity. His second book, ‘Ceramic Transfer Printing’ draws together the great potential of print for ceramics. Kevin has written many articles and reviews for journals such as Ceramic Review and presented his work on glass, ceramics and print in Canada, Thailand, Hong Kong, Denmark, Germany, USA, Australia, and China. He was recently awarded a National Teaching Fellowship for his contribution to glass and ceramics teaching, in particular this relates to postgraduate at MA, MPhil and Ph.D levels.

Dr Petrie’s work often refers to the long tradition of graphic ceramic surface decoration at the same time as reflecting contemporary life.

St Pauls Church, kilnformed glass

Cell of Himself, Kiln form glass with printed inclusions, blown glass

Besides his own work as an artist, Dr Petrie is an author, lecturer, exhibition curator, and he is an authority and specialist on contemporary glass and ceramics matters. He has lectured at the following institutions: The University of the West of England, Bristol, The University of Westminster, London, Norwich School of Art and Design, Bath Central St. Martins School of Art and Design, London, Rajabhat Institute Changmai, Thailand, Australia National University, Canberra, Australia, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, Sydney College of the Arts, Australia, Anla Glas, Denmark, Hong Kong Baptist University – Academy of Visual Arts.

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James Maskrey

If you are familiar with the first of the DC / Sunderland glass exhibition “Glass3″ that was held in Georgetown in 2008, you might have seen James Maskrey‘s work. His work has really transformed into haunting and ethereal work. Social situations, overheard conversations, observed interactions and personal experiences hugely inspire Jim’s work. Tall stories, elaborate hoaxes and peculiar facts, usually from a bygone era, are then translated into glass, often resulting in flamboyant narratives, theatrical compositions or simple objects with a twist. The series below are from a series based on the polar expeditions by Edward Wilson to collect penguin eggs.


The Worst Journey in the World, blown and hot sculptured glass details, 2011. Photo by David Williams

The Drayton Egg, blown and hot sculptured glass details, 2011. Photo by David Williams

Last Entry,Winter Journey, andThe Barrier, 2011, Blown and solid formed hot glass with printed glass inclusions.

Photos by David Williams

The works poetically and poignantly touches on themes of collecting and hubris. In the austral winter of 1911, Wilson led “The Winter Journey”, a doomed journey to the Emperor penguin’s breeding grounds at Cape Crozier to collect eggs for scientific study. The eggs were supposed to reveal the evolutionary links between dinosaurs and birds but their collection nearly killed the journey’s participants. Frozen and exhausted, they successfully collected three eggs and desperately exhausted they returned to Cape Evans, later describing this expedition “The Worst Journey in the World.”

James started working with glass in 1990. After graduating in 2000 with a Three Dimensional Design BA (Hons) degree in glass at The Surrey Institute of Art and Design he was appointed as Artist in Residence at the Surrey Institute. In 2001 James joined the Glass and Ceramics department at The University of Sunderland and graduated with an MA in Glass with distinction in 2004. Jim was recently named as one of the artists that will exhibit at the British Glass Biennale 2012.

Coming Next - London Affordable Art Fair & Imagery in Glass Class and featured Sunderland Artists: Jeff Sarmiento, Cate Watkinson and more!

Washington, DC Fulbright Scholars Connect with Ancestral Home of President George Washington

>As our time in the UK continued, Fellow Fulbright Scholar Tim Tate and I were invited to speak with students from St. Anthony’s – a technical specialist college in Sunderland.


Tim Tate & Michael Janis talk about the future of the arts to students at St Anthony’s in Sunderland, England.

After meeting with the students, Sunderland City Council’s Catherine Auld then took the DC crew on a quick jaunt to a couple of scenic spots that are around the city of Sunderland. First stop, the Town Hall and Indoor Market of Durham.

Tim Tate and Kay Janis at the Durham Town Hall.

Durham Town Hall and Market place were on the site since the Middle Ages. The current building dates from 1800′s.


Kay Janis seeks out notions from the indoor markets.

Nearby is the famed Durham Cathedral. The magnificent Romanesque structure dates from the 10th century, and boasts fine stained glass panels.


Durham Cathedral (and denim jeans artwork installation).

Catherine Auld, Kay Janis and Tim Tate at the Cathedral’s famed “Sanctuary Knocker”.

“Daily Bread” stained glass in Durham Cathedral by Mark Angus, 1984.

More importantly, the Cathedral, cloisters and grounds were used as some of the sets in the Harry Potter movie series.




Professor Tate as Harry Potter and the Fulbright Scholar, 2012

Afterwards, Catherine took Kay, Tim and I to see the ancestral home of George Washington in the county now known as Tyne and Wear. Although the hall was closed, Catherine worked her magic and arranged for a private tour of the building.


Washington Old Hall

George Washington’s ancestors were natives of this area as far back as the 12th century, and members of his family continued to live there for almost five hundred years.

The Saxon Origin of the Washington Family Name: This was, in fact, where the purely Saxon name of Washington derived. Among the first to bear it were the descendants of William de Hartburn near Stockton [-on-Tees], who came to live in the manor now known as Washington Old Hall as long before as 1183.

At that time, people in England and elsewhere had no surnames as we know them today, and were most often identified by the locations in which they lived. “Washington” was one of them. The name originally meant “the estate of the Hwaes family.’ “Hwaes” in its turn was the name of a Saxon chief, while “ynga” meant “family” and “ton” – a typically Saxon suffix – stood for “estate.” These three terms were linked and given a tinge of French since, like many prominent families in England, the new Washingtons sought to identify themselves with the French Plantagenet kings who succeeded the Normans and ruled England after 1154. The result was the original form of Washington – “de Wessyngton”.

Washington, DC Fulbright Scholars Tim Tate and Michael Janis pay homage to the Washington Old Hall in Durham County, UK.

Washington Old Hall was pulled down and rebuilt by the Bishop of Durham, who purchased the property from William de Wessyngton in 1613.Sadly, though, some three centuries later, it had become very dilapidated. The Hall was condemned as unfit for human habitation, and destined for demolition. It was fortunately saved from demolition by a committee specially formed to preserve it, and after thoroughgoing restoration work, the Hall was officially opened in 1955 by the then American ambassador, Winthrop W. Aldrich. Two years later, the Hall was taken over by the National Trust, an organization dedicated to preserving places of historical interest or natural beauty.


Garth Clark lecture on Ai Weiwei ceramics

The next morning, Garth Clark, noted art historian and critic – who the Washington Glass School has posted about his thoughts on the Death of Craft previously – gave a fascinating and provocative lecture about the work of Chinese bad-boy ceramic artist Ai Weiwei.

Coming Next: Workshops at University of Sunderland.

Click here to jump to first part of the Fulbright Journey blog posts.

University of Sunderland Welcomes Fulbright Scholars Michael Janis & Tim Tate

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Fulbright Travelers Check In

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University of Sunderland poster for the visiting Fulbright Scholars.

Tim Tate and I have been powering through our stay here at the University of Sunderland in the beautiful northeast of England. This is a blog update of some of the adventure we have participated in whilst on our Fulbright Scholarship to the UK.

The University of Sunderland Glass Centre and the glass roof deck.

Kevin Petrie, Head of the Glass & Ceramics Department

We arrived on Thursday, met at the airport by the University’s head of the Glass and Ceramics Department, Kevin Petrie. Kevin took us on a whirlwind tour of the massive building complex. The centre, built in 1998, has a glass panel roof – where one is invited to walk across and watch the blowing facilities down below.

Tim Tate takes a walk on the glass.

The size, equipment and state-of-the-art facility was overwhelming. It was great to see some old friends that had come to DC in years past waving a welcoming hello from across the acreage of studio space. We would be coming back to the University after a couple workshops in town.

Some of the many huge kilns at the university.


Here I am wandering thru one the centre’s exhibition halls.

The beach in front of the hotel in Seaburn.

Our hotel could not have been better – sweeping views across the North Sea, with Seaburn beach in front of our hotel. Nice.

Creative Cohesion’s new studio and exhibition center in Sunderland.

The arts organization, Creative Cohesion, held a cocktail reception to welcome us and inaugurate the new hotshop at their new facility in Sunderland city centre . For those of you from DC, you might remember the organization and its many talented artists that participated in the 2006′s Glass 3 exhibit in Georgetown, organized by Artomatic. In 2009, many more artists from Sunderland participated in the Artomatic held near the Navy Yard/near the new Nationals Ballpark. The non-profit arts organization began over 10 years ago, initially designed as a way to help for glass artists coming from the university mature into professional artists. The success of the organization’s mission has expanded and now includes ceramic and visual arts, performance artists, and poets in its umbrella of services.

Our arrival coincided with the center’s celebration of the opening of their new hotshop – our workshop would be the first for the glass shop. Upon arrival – we see a familiar face – a poster of the UK artists working in Dave D’Orio’s DC Glasswork’s hotshop is in the window.

We saw some old friends in unexpected places…

Tim and I planned to do a few workshops to allow for collaboration between the DC & UK artists. The first up workshop was creating fused glass rollups.

The artists from Sunderland listen with intent.

The big burly electrician Richie tries fusing for the first time. And shows real talent.

The next day, the glass panels are placed onto the pastorellis and artist Roger Tye works the Bulls-eye glass into a rollup.

Roger Tye gets the glass into shape.

Click HERE to jump to video of the roll-up process by Jo Howell Photography and Maverickart

The next day, Tim Tate and I were welcomed at the University of Sunderland. We first gave a lecture about our work, the Washington Glass School & Studio and the Glass Secessionism movement.

Professor Tim Tate speaks about his work and influences.


Coming up soon – a posting or two about the workshops at the National Glass Center, touring around the area and the London Affordable Art Fair! Stay posted!

London’s Calling (Tim Tate & Michael Janis)

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Bon Voyage Guys!
Professors Janis and Tate are on the Road to England. As mentioned in earlier posts, the Fulbright Scholars will be at the UK’s National Glass Centre at the University of Sunderland, in the northeast of England. The boys will also be exhibiting their artwork at London’s Affordable Art Fair, this March 15-18. They have promised to post updates of their adventures across the pond. I am sure we can expect photos of their sights – perhaps a glimpse of Tateat the Tate!

For those of you in the land of John Bull, here are the dates and location of the show in London’s Battersea area:
London Affordable Art Fair
Cohesion Glass Network Booth
Battersea Park

London
SW11 4NJ
15 -18 March 2012

Tim Tate & Michael Janis – Fulbright Recipients

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Professor Janis

This March, WGS Professors Janis and Tate will be heading over the pond to Ye Olde England as Fulbright Scholars – heading to University Of Sunderland and the The Institute for International Research in Glass (IIRG).

Professor Tate

Sponsored by the US Department of State, the Fulbright Program is a program of competitive, merit-based grants for international educational exchange for students, scholars, professionals, scientists and artists, founded by US Senator J. William Fulbright. The Fulbright Program is one of the most prestigious awards programs worldwide, operating in over 155 countries. Forty-three Fulbright alumni have won Nobel Prizes, including two in 2010.

IIRG‘s Centre

The University of Sunderland has the largest glass and ceramics department in Europe. The Glass & Ceramic department is housed in the National Glass Centre’s landmark £17million building, adjacent to St.Peter’s Campus.

The UK National Glass Centre has interesting glass shop procedures. Above is photo by Anna Liukas from Sunderland’s 2010 calendar featuring shots of students at work in the hot shop.
Above, a flamework studio student pictured hard at work. photo: Anna Liukas
Apparently, the North East of England is much hotter than we were led to believe. Traveling light should be the bywords for our two intrepid scholars.

Tim and Michael will be teaching special courses at the University starting in the month of March, 2012. We are looking forward to their stories and blog photo updates of their escapades!

Bullseye Gallery Features Painter(ly) Glass Artists

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Michael Janis Observation of Signals
2011 Kilnformed glass


Jeff Wallin Kate
2008 Kilnformed glass

Bullseye Gallery – located near the Bullseye Glass Center in Portland, Oregon – has a special exhibit opening soon that focuses on artists that work.
Titled “FACTURE -Artists at the Forefront of Painterly Glass” the exhibit asks
what advantages do the materials and processes found in glass provide that can’t be found in other painting media.


“FACTURE -Artists at the Forefront of Painterly Glass”

January 4 thru February 25, 2012
Bullseye Gallery, Portland, OR

Works by Michael Janis, Kari Minnick, Martha Pfanschmidt, Ted Sawyer, Abi Spring, and Jeff Wallin
Artist Reception: Wednesday, January 4, 5:30 – 7:30 pm

A panel discussion will be held with the artists moderated by Bullseye’s Michael Endo on Sunday January 8 from 2pm–4pm.

Bullseye Gallery offers contemporary art objects and experiences examining the potential and complexity of kilnformed glass. The gallery also explores glass in the built environment, inviting art into architecture through collaborations with artists, designers, architects and clients.

The gallery hosts artist lectures, panel discussions, and events which encourage dialogue about the concepts and processes driving contemporary art.

Bullseye Gallery
300 NW 13th Ave, Portland, OR 97209
Phone: 503.227.0222

Gallery Hours: Tues – Sat 10:00AM – 5:00PM

The Process: Setting Up a Museum Solo Exhibition

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As part of an ongoing series, we focus on the process of an event or artwork as the basis for the blog posting. Today, the blog posting is a two-fer where the photo documentation is both about Michael Janis’ creative process and info about Michael Janis’ solo show at Fuller Craft Museum, opening this Saturday, August 6, 2011.

The Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton, Massachusetts

The lead time for a museum show is very long – the Fuller Craft Museum contacted Michael in 2009 requesting a solo show at the museum in 2011, so Michael has been planning some aspect of the work for well over a year and features twenty five of his glass artworks. This posting will focus on his site specific sculpture in the show – titled “Unpredictable Factors”.

To help visualize the space, images of previous exhibitions and a floor plan of the gallery space within the museum were sent to Michael to help plan out the show.



Floor Plan of Fuller Museum’s Tarlow Gallery



Marc Petrovic’s exhibition in Fuller’s Tarlow Gallery 2007.



Michael said that he wanted to create a large scale work for the museum show, and had focused on using one of the 8′ wide floor-to-ceiling window areas as the location, with the idea that the light and view beyond could be integrated into the work.


Concepts for the sculpture were sketched by Michael, and details of the steel work were outlined.



Sketches were integrated with photos of the gallery as the studies advanced.

Michael focused on the design with a central image sculpture and proceeded forward with creation of the other artwork pieces for the show. Working with noted metalsmith Chris Shea, the architectural metal work for the large sculpture was created.


Firing of separate layers of the components within the sculpture and the fitting to the metal framework took place in late spring of 2011.

In August, all 25 works by Michael Janis were crated and packed for shipping to the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton – about 20 miles south of Boston, Massachusetts.

Upon arrival at the Fuller Museum, the artwork is opened, inspected and cataloged by the Museum staff.



Fuller Registrar Donna Eleyi inspects the incoming work.



The condition of each piece is noted and the packing is documented. Here Donna Eleyi photographs the unpacking by Preparator Jason Ram.



The works are placed to allow for the arrangement by Fuller Museum curator Perry Price.



Installation of the steel framework for Michael Janis’ large sculpture “Unpredictable Factors” proceeds.



With completion of the wall mounting the artworks, the remaining tasks for the museum show are to install wall text for the show and artwork wall labels.

The exhibition opens Saturday, August 6, and there is a public reception August 7, from 2-5 pm. For more info on Michael’s lecture at the museum- click HERE.

Michael Janis: A Lighter Hand

August 6 – November 6, 2011

Reception Aug 7, 2011, 2-5pm


Michael Janis’ Solo Exhibition @ Fuller Craft Museum

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Fuller Craft Museum, Brockton, Massachusetts

Founded as a traditional fine arts museum and cultural center, over the past four decades the Fuller Craft Museum has transformed itself into a collection devoted entirely to crafts, one of only eight such museums in the US.
New England’s only museum of contemporary craft presents A Lighter Hand: The Glass Drawings of Michael Janis, on display Aug. 6 – Nov. 6, 2011.


One of the new works Michael has made for the exhibition is a site-specific sculpture that measures 8′-0″ and will be installed in floor to ceiling window of the exhibition space.


Michael Janis Unpredictable Factors
3′-0″W x 8′-0″H x 4″
fused glass, glass powder imagery, steel

Michael Janis Unpredictable Factors (detail)
3′-0″W x 8′-0″H x 4″
fused glass, glass powder imagery, steel

From the Fuller Craft Museum press release:

,,,”Janis’ work is the result of a laborious and challenging process. Similar to sgraffito, where a design is scratched through a colored ground revealing another color beneath; to produce the image Janis sifts black glass powder onto sheet glass, scraping away the powder to produce the detail. The image is suspended between layers of sheet glass and fired in a kiln to fuse the constituent pieces together. In this manner any number of images can be combined to produce complex juxtapositions. The result is a collage produced entirely in glass, built from a time-consuming process allowing for an extended contemplation of his subjects.
Building on the legacy of Surrealist artists of the early 20th century, in particular Giorgio de Chirico whose paintings juxtaposed disparate objects in moody and indistinct landscapes, Janis is able to construct a contemplative feeling from the layering of seemingly inanimate objects and ambiguous characters. His images in glass, particularly those examples in a tall and narrow format, also allude to the narrative quality of stained glass.
The juxtaposition of text, symbols, and figures seem to imply a hidden message or meaning, but like an ink blot or word association Janis leaves the viewer to provide their own conclusions.
Janis lives and works in Washington, DC, where he is Co-Director and an instructor at the Washington Glass School. He first began working with glass as an architect, evident in his dedication to sheet glass and the precision draftsmanship in his drawings.

Fuller Craft will celebrate the opening of A Lighter Hand, with a public reception August 7 at 2 p.m. at the Museum. The reception is free for members and free with museum admission for all others.”
A lecture by Michael Janis precedes the public reception – click HERE for more information.

The Fuller Museum is located at 455 Oak Street, Brockton, MA 02301