The Bead Project’s Spring 2022 Trunk Show took place on a Thursday evening, May 12th, from 5 – 7 pm in the Agnes Varis Art Center. Eleven students completed the Bead Project this semester after being selected from a pool of over 50 applicants, and the Trunk Show was a chance for them to share the glass beads, jewelry, and artwork they created during 9 weeks of studio time at UrbanGlass. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Bead Project, originally started by Annette Rose Shapiro to help diversify UrbanGlass by breaking down financial barriers for women and femmes to establish a studio practice in glass.
While some students had dabbled in glass before and took the class as a way to solidify their practice, others used glass as a new outlet for their creative sensibilities. The participating artists were Mika Agari, Evadne Clarke, Amanda Cofield, Carol Hu, Veronica Mijelshon, El-Melek Moore, Antara Morfe, Prinita Thevarajah, Michelle Thompson, Jingjing Tian and Tara Traister. The event also featured this semester’s Bead Project Artist in Residence, Roxana de Leon, who completed the Bead Project in the Fall of 2021 and was invited back to extend her exploration of flameworked glass and lend assistance to the new students.
Following a graduation ceremony, the artists sold their work to friends, family and UrbanGlass shoppers, gave out their business cards and unveiled the “signature beads” of their creation which will remain on sale until the next cohort completes the program. Signature beads are on display next to the register of the UrbanGlass|ware store and are also available online. Sales benefit the Bead Project alumni directly, as well as supporting the future of the program itself.