Pittsburgh Glass Center Exhibit :: Lifeforms

March 14, 2016 , In: Culture, Glass, Inspiration

I live in Pittsburgh, PA and we have a really awesome glass center.  Currently, the PGC is running an exhibit called Lifeforms.  This is a travelling exhibit that will eventually end at the Glass Art Society Conference in Corning NY in June 2016.  Heather McElwee, Executive Director of the PGC, is a juror on the show.

Lifeforms (show link) is an exhibit of glass models that were made in the spirit of father and son team, Rudolf and Leopold Blaschka (read the wiki about these two, very interesting) who are famous for their 19th and 20th century models of invertebrates and plants. If you go to the show link, you will be able to see all entries. The show includes botany models, zoology models, and scaled models of microorganisms.

The show was juried by 5 well known artists in the glass field, and 50 artists were chosen to exhibit.  I happily took in the show last week and took some photos so that you could all see the awesomeness that is a glass exhibit! I did not take photos of every item, and can’t share them all with you here because it would be a massive post.  I will share some, and list the artist, title and skills used, and let you know which are my faves! All photos are mine.

 Victor Trabucco, Hawthorne Berries, lampwork, fused, laminated
 Paul Stankard, Meditation – Healing Virtues of the Plant Kingdom, Apis, flameworked
 Karen Willenbrink-Johnsen, India Blue Peacock, blown, sculpted, powder images
 Elizabeth Johnson, Ranier Cherries, lampworked, copper wire, ceramic
 Lisa Demagall, Radiolaria, flameworked
 Shane Fero, Winter White Redpolls, flameworked, etched, found objects
 Sara Sally LaGrand, Culling, flameworked
 Mark Clarson, Untitled, cast glass, silver leaf
 Mauro Vianello, Snailes, flameworked, wood
 Brandon Martin, Axolotl, lampworked, river rock, resin, wood, copper


Bronwen Heilman, The Lovely, flameworked
 Michael Mangiafico and Ed Pinto, Tears of the Sun God, flameworked, kilnformed, wood
There is so much detail in this piece, it’s unreal!



Jupiter Nielsen and Nathan Belmont, I’iwi in Haleakala Sandalwood, flameworked 
 Jeremy Sinkus, The Future is Coming, blown, sculpted
Another favorite, filled with detail


 Beau Tsai, Panther Chameleon, flameworked


 Kelly O’Dell, Hope, blown, sculpted


 Raven Skyriver, Bask, solid sculpted


Sam McMillen, Cupped Up, solid sculpted
And finally, my personal favorite of the whole show.  So much so that I was tempted to purchase it.  
 Erin and Grant Garmezy, Desert Blossom, sculpted and electroplated



If you have the time and are within driving distance, or even not, it’s a great show to take in.  It’s not very big, you could also tour the glass center or time your visit to also take a class or a make-it, take-it, but it’s well worth it to see.  I really enjoyed bringing this exhibit to you and hope you enjoyed seeing it as well!
Susan Kennedy

Susan Kennedy

Susan Kennedy Susan, the owner of SueBeads, started making glass beads in 2005 because she loved lampworked beads so much, but wanted to make her own instead of buying them on ebay! She also makes enameled components and dabbles in polymer clay, but her first love is glass. She has attended jewelry-making classes at ArtBLISS and has taken classes from Barbara Lewis (torch fired enameling) in addition to several classes at the Pittsburgh Glass Center.
  1. Reply

    Wow. Thanks for sharing this. I saw the father/son glasswork at the Harvard museum years ago and remember it with amazement. Also saw "Lucy" there that day (bones).

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