Jack Johnson & Glass

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Jack Johnson’s got the whole (glass) world, in his hands.


This past summer we had a blog posting about National Geographic‘s newly created “Arts Ambassador for the Environment Award” – given to entertainers that are leaders in environmental and cultural conservation. The award was designed and made by the Washington Glass Studio from recycled glass. The winner for the inaugural award was singer Jack Johnson. We just received a photo of Jack holding his award.

The creation of the National Geographic Society award was covered in the first of the series called “The Process“. Click HERE to jump to the posting of how the recycled glass award was made using the “lost wax” process.

Installation of Safeway Supermarket Public Art Project

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Safeway Bethesda site construction photo August 22, 2011


Earlier
posts on the Washington Glass School Blog featured the design and fabrication of Safeway supermaket’s first public art project – located here in Bethesda and created by the Washington Glass Studio.
Installation of the public artwork has begun. The cast glass panels were made from recycled glass taken from the original supermarket during the demolition phase, and the salvaged glass was cast in a bas-relief method to create translucent panels that referenced fresh herbs – perfect for a new LEED Certified building that would house the trendy Safeway supermarket.

Erwin Timmers installs the cast glass & steel panels.

Evan Morgan affixes the glass panels to the steel framework.

Interior view of the artwork – looking out towards Bradley Ave. Bethesda, MD.

The concept of the panels was to have the artwork allow openings to allow the interior and exterior blur – approx 25% of each building bay is open to allow air flow.

Hardware still-life.

Roche Constructors are the builders of the project – and they have a Safeway webcam. Click on the link and at the top is a time-lapse feature that allows one to see the project’s demo-to-current construction status. Click HERE to jump to the Roche webcam site.

UPDATE: Click HERE to jump to finished project images.

Washington Post Magazine Features Environmental Artist Erwin Timmers

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photo by Ben Tankersley / Washington Post

The Washington Post Sunday Magazine has a great article about how Erwin Timmers is able to source artwork from ordinary cast-offs. Washington Post writer Kris Coronado interviewed Erwin for the “Closer Inspection” column of the magazine, and spent the day at the school with photographer Ben Tankersley, wanting to know the story of seemingly every piece of glass they found.



Washington Post’s Ben Tankersley sets up an impromptu photo studio for Erwin Timmers work



Kris writes: “Erwin Timmers, artist and co-founder of the Washington Glass School in Mount Rainier, has taken recycling to heart. “That’s my carbon footprint,” he jokes, pointing to a depression of his boot set in the large slab of repurposed green glass hung on the wall. “I like using objects that everybody recognizes that are everyday, common items,” he says, “that people don’t really realize what value they have … until they end up in the trash heap.”



Washington Post Magazine “Closer Inspection” Sunday, August 21, 2011

Get your paper this weekend! Or for those looking to minimize their carbon footprint – click HERE to read the article online. Want to know more about Erwin’s upcoming class on fusing with recycled glass or making tables with recycled glass? Click HERE to jump to the Washington Glass School online class list.

Solar Powered 3D Printer Turns Sand Into Glass

>Solar Sintar

Markus Kayser – Solar Sinter Project from Markus Kayser on Vimeo.

If you have been like me, you spend every possible hour in the studio – head down, working on artwork and projects. The world, my friend, however, has been marching on. New technologies are reshaping how art is made.
In this brave new world, 3D printers top every sculptors must-have list.

The model above is Emmanuel Lattes’ Double Möbius. 3D printed in glass. Glass frit powder is mixed with a binding agent that allows the work to be modeled and built by layers in a 3D printer. The work is then carefully loaded into a kiln and fired, fusing the powder and burning away the binding agent. Tho a bit more fragile and rougher than traditional glass forming, the possibilities of computer assisted sculpture are incredible.

But to put all this progress into perspective, a little history is in order. The first 3D printer was produced by Charles Hull in 1984, who utilized a patented stereolithography method for the print process. The basic approach for 3D printing is to create a layer of polymer for the desired 2D slice, cure that area, and then repeat to build layer-upon-layer. Hull’s technique involved creating a 0.0025-inch layer of liquid photocurable polymer that could be cured with a UV laser.
In 1988, the first commercially available 3D printer was
officially launched by 3D Systems, which utilized a photo-optical acrylic resin. In the early 1990s, a number of other methods were developed, including fused deposition modeling that extruded thermoplastics for layering and multi-jet modeling, based on ink-jet printer technology. Techniques have also been developed that use powder and lasers. Over time, a multitude of companies across the world have sprung up offering their high-end printers combined with CAD software and scanners, allowing objects to be either scanned or designed from scratch.


In the above video, Markus Kayser goes into the Sahara with a solar powered printer to create 3D objects – including a bowl – by melting the sand that he scoops up. What an idea for the Glass School’s bowl class! (& class outdoors!). But, you may ask,
what about annealing?

Awesome to get a glimpse of the future of both sculpture and sustainable design.

For more about 3D printing – click HERE to jump to a recent article in The Economist.

Glass Sparks: Erwin Timmers

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In honor of Earth Day, today’s artist profile is about eco-artist Erwin Timmers.

Erwin has become one of the area’s leading “green artists”. Recycling, waste, the environment and how they relate to society are recurring themes in his work – all of which he blames on his Dutch heritage. Erwin’s main medium is one of the least recycled building materials; float glass or window glass, and he has had to develop new techniques to work with this material.

Originally from Amsterdam, Erwin Timmers moved to California, graduating from Santa Monica College for Design Art and Architecture in 1995. Erwin’s artwork and sculpture has always incorporated recycled materials, and often integrated lighting elements. In 1999 he came to the Washington DC area and along with a new home came a new passion: Glass – creating the perfect marriage of metal and light. Combining this with found and recycled metal, his work carries strong environmental themes.

“Mr Cobrahead”, recycled materials, cast recycled glass

“Love Me, Love Me Not”, recycled steel, cast recycled glass, neon

Seeking to further his knowledge on using recycled glass, Erwin soon found there were few local options that taught glass techniques and recycled glass processes. And with little information available, Erwin became a pioneer in the field, developing his own kiln schedules. Fate would have it that he met up with Tim Tate, who was then starting the foundations for a glass school in Washington, DC. With his experimental approach and his easygoing, accessible teaching attitude, Erwin and Tim started the Washington Glass School in 2001. Erwin developed a number of courses that integrate his love of the materials and his environmental philosophies. His sustainable design knowledge has been sought by other glass schools, and besides courses here at the Washington Glass School, he has been teaching across the country, spreading the word about eco-friendly art.

Erwin Timmers chats with Italian glass Maestro Lino Tagliapietra.

Erwin has also become a leading consultant in LEED Certified artwork. He has received multiple public art commissions and is also featured in numerous private collections. The EPA had commissioned Erwin and the Washington Glass Studio to create an educational sculpture for the courtyard at the EPA’s Washington, DC headquarters.

Low-Impact Demonstration Project, Ariel Rios Courtyard, Washington, DC. Quinn Evans Architects, John Shorb Landscaping

Erwin Timmers and Evan Morgan installing recycled glass panels.

Recently completed architectural projects include recycled glass works for Prince George’s County Courthouse and for Fox Architects and he is currently working on an eco-friendly project for the new Safeway in Bethesda, MD. Erwin’s expertise in the field of environmental art is sought out by the media, with interviews on local news stations, including this video where Erwin’s demonstration of tempered glass did not go quite as planned. The Washington Post Magazine has just interviewed Erwin for an upcoming article on recycling, scheduled to come out this June. His artwork is featured in several books, notably “Art Glass Today” by Jeffrey Snyder and “Ideas for Creative Reuse” by Garth Johnson. Two more books that include work by Erwin are due out this Spring/Summer.

“Self Scrutiny”, cast recyled glass
photos: Anything Photographic

“Self Scrutiny” detail

Erwin’s environmental focused artwork has found an audience, from Miami International Art Fair to local and regional art gallery shows, including and upcoming engagement at Project 4 Gallery this summer. His work showcases the possibility and beauty of recycled material, while encouraging the viewer to consider his or her environmental impact.

“What We Leave Behind” cast recycled glass, steel.

Using glass salvaged from a Virginia office building refurbishment, disposable technology and ephemera from recent decades are expressed as though discovered from a future archaeological dig.


“What We Leave Behind” detail, 2000′s

photo by Anything Photographic

His work is not always appreciated in the manner he expected – a feature on his work on the Artist-a-Day website prompted viewers to ask if the work was made of Jello.

Erwin will be one of the artists featured in the upcoming LongView Gallery show Artists of the Washington Glass School: The First Ten Years.

Washington Glass School: The First 10 Years
LongView Gallery
1234 9th Street, NW, Washington, DC May 19 – June 19,2011
Artist Reception, May 19th, 6:30-8:30 PM

For other glass artist profiles

Diane Cabe
Sean Hennessey
Elizabeth Mears

Teddie Hathaway

Robert Kincheloe

Jeff Zimmer
Allegra Marquart

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!

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Kris Coronado interviews Erwin Timmers

The Washington Post Magazine columnist Kris Coronado spent the day in the Washington Glass School this week, interviewing Erwin Timmers for an upcoming article on recycling and environmentally conscious artwork.

Above & Below: Washington Post photographer Benjamin Tankersley photos artwork made from recycled glass components.

Erwin talked wth Kris about his background in sustainable design, and how the growing awareness of the limits to our natural resources has led to a greater appreciation and interest in work made with environmentally responsible materials. Post photographer Benjamin Tankersley set up a full photo backdrop to properly document Erwin’s eco-artwork. The Washington Post article is due out in the paper in early June.

Art and Architecture: Public Art Project

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Safeway Bethesda
Rounds VanDuzer Architects

Safeway has started construction of a new supermarket in Bethesda, MD. The new store will be a LEED certified supermarket as Safeway is committed to the greening of its stores. Besides going green, the supermarket will be built to what Safeway calls the urban “lifestyle” market, with high-quality urban design. Safeway is one of North America’s largest supermarket chains with more than 1,700 stores.

As part of the project, Safeway commissioned the Washington Glass Studio to integrate artwork into the architectural façade of the building. The wall of artwork will activate the street along the Bradley Street façade, and marks the first public artwork commission by the national supermarket chain for its stores.



The cast recycled glass and steel artwork is integrated into the architectural façade.


Over 30 feet long and 9 feet high, the glass and steel artwork will be a strong element located in Bethesda. The new building design will act as a “civic gateway” to Bethesda‘s Central Business District (CBD).

Responding to the architectural design by Rounds VanDuzer Architects the large scale artwork will feature colorful cast recycled glass made from glass salvaged from the original Safeway supermarket on the same site. Ecoartist Erwin Timmers had slogged thru the site demolition, removing glass for the artwork. Erwin’s integration of reconfigured and recycled components has made him a leader in sustainable design and he continues his work in multidisciplinary LEED projects.


Cast recycled window glass sample of custom “fresh herb” design for Safeway.

Above is the “bay leaf” pattern.


UPDATE: Click HERE to jump to images of finished project.


Timmers in Texas

>Our Guru of GreenErwin Timmers – will be spreading the word of eco-art to the great free State of Texas. Erwin will be teaching a Recycled Glass workshop at Hot Glass Houston.

Erwin’s class will be in Mid-October and the class will cram as many techniques and ways of kilncasting recycled glass as possible!

Don’t Mess With Texas.

For those of you who aren’t in the Lone Star State – you can take the class here at the Washington Glass School – click HERE to jump to the class description.

Environmental Art in NYC

>Excess and Environment:

sustainability in a world of consumption

“What We Leave Behind” by Erwin Timmers

Materials: cast recycled window glass, steel. Dimensions: 70″ x 50″ x 16″

The beautiful dark green glass with gold highlights was recovered from the construction site of a Virginia office building where the building was undergoing a cosmetic updating of the facade. The spandrel glass discarded from the old building was used as the basis of the cast glass panels.



About the exhibition: “Excess and Environment”

The presence of excess exists in our day-to-day lives, but often hides behind masks of disposal systems, social acceptance, and misinformation.
This exhibition explores the idea of the impact of our excess on our natural environment both visually and theoretically. The art involved will relate to mass consumption and waste’s effects on the environment. Art using these excess materials as a medium will also represent this concept of sustainability in the midst of excess.

Excess and Environment

Opening Reception:

Friday, April 16th 2010

7:00 pm to 11:00 pm

AE Studios LIC, 39-06 Crescent Street, Long Island City, Queens, NY 11101

(One stop on the subway away from Midtown Manhattan)



Artists showing work include Chris Jordan, Eve Mosher, Walter “Tinho” Nomura, Justin Gignac, Akirash, Mikal Hameed, Erwin Timmers, Miles Wickham, Beau Stanton, Destroy and Rebuild, Christina Chobot, Trash Track and more.



“What We Leave Behind” Erwin Timmers

Detail: images of panels depicting the 1980′s and 2000′s




According to the artist, the series, What We Leave Behind was conceived from the viewpoint of an archaeologist, who might, centuries from now, uncover artifacts from our era. Just like the archaeologist, you are looking down to uncover the items. Elements are recognizable from the various decades … objects once in popular use but now resting in landfills.



The title of the work is based on the book about our culture of excess and the impact our trash will continue to make long after we are gone: “The World Without Us” by Alan Weisman.



The profits from the art sold at this exhibit will be split between the artists and Art for Global Justice, so that we may sustain the local artist community and keep Art for Global Justice’s youth workshops and art exchange program going.