The Glass Art Society Conference 2014 was held in Chicago this year, so friend and fellow-glass fuser Brandie Dunn and I took the train down to check it out.
Image from the GAS Conference 2014 Program Book
Alas, as the membership fee is a bit steep for me, (also, the society seems to be more oriented to glass blowers rather than fusers) as non-members we were only able to access the public displays at this conference.
Our main goal was to visit the Bullseye Glass booth, as I am planning to use a great deal more of their product in my own work. We had a great visit with the reps at the booth, who were very welcoming and receptive to all questions. I scored a great re-usable Bulleye shopping bag to fill with show literature and give-aways.
Next we met a few more helpful reps from Covington Engineering and HIS Glassworks. We began asking questions about coldworking equipment, but the conversation was cut short as they were leaving for the GAS gallery tour. They were nice enough to encourage us to tag along, and we quickly changed our plans to do just that. What a great decision that turned out to be, as we toured the Ken Saunders Gallery, Echt Gallery, and the Vale Craft Gallery, all located on W. Superior in Chicago.
One of my favorite pieces was by artist Steve Jensen, combining natural wood with resin and glass.
Jensen hails from Seattle, WA, coming from a long tradition of Norwegian fishermen and boat builders. He grew up on his father’s fishing boat. His artwork displays incredible range in mediums including glass, wood carving, and bronze sculpture.
This is a close-up of a piece by Harue Shimomoto that was another favorite of mine:
I once watched Shimomoto unpacking and hanging a piece at a SOFA show in Chicago. The delicate traceries of glass are hung in overlapping sections to create the full display. It was amazing to think that you can actually ship something this delicate.
Although this blog could go on for days on this topic, I’ll just include one more piece today, from Thomas Scoon:
Again, I am drawn to pieces that combine natural materials with glass, in this case, chunks of stone.
“Stone/glass/stone/glass, the two substances layered like some sedimentary strata on the side of a cliff. But, though cold to the touch, Scoon’s assemblages still echo with their igneous source; this is the stuff of magma and the core.” – James Yood, Art Critic