As the pandemic stretches on, much of the economic news from the glass-art world is more about survival than success. But the impressive auction results from Pilchuck's first-ever virtual annual gala, themed "Through the Kaleidoscope" and held online on October 17th, were something to celebrate. The results were all the more notable because zthe staff of Pilchuck, which in June canceled its 2020 in-person programming, braced themselves for sharply lower gala income for 2020 compared to the pre-pandemic 2019 gala's $1.2 million. And instead of the usual 150 to 200 auction items, they pared this year's offerings down to 96,
Philanthropist and glass-art collector Robert Minkoff died on Sunday, September 6, 2020, from complications of central nervous system lymphoma, first diagnosed in 2018. Through the Potomac, Maryland-based Robert M. Minkoff Foundation, he funded a number of artist residencies, scholarship programs, and academic conferences, as well as giving to the Jewish Federation and Housing Unlimited, a program that makes it possible for those with mental-health issues to live independently. (Disclosure: The author served as the director of the Robert M. Minkoff Foundation until 2018.)
Charlotte Potter Kasic, who returned to Norfolk, Virginia, in January 2020 to become the manager of museum education and engagement at the Barry Art Museum at Old Dominion University, has been named as the museum's interim director as the founding director Jutta-Annette Page is set to retire in October 2020. Kasic is credited with the museum's fluid transition to virtual exhibitions and activities when the pandemic hit, and the institution is now open with limited hours.
Artist and educator Michael Glancy died of complications of lung cancer last Saturday, August 29th. 2020. He passed away at the age of 70 at his summer home in Harwich Port, Massachusetts. He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Robin Stengel Glancy; his son Michael Glancy, Jr., daughter-in-law, Elizabeth Little Glancy of Baltimore, Md., and his beloved granddaughters Ella and Mae; as well as his son Robin Peyton Glancy.
The Glass Art Society has announced it will push its next in-person annual conference from 2021 to 2022, citing the ongoing uncertainty and health risks of Covid-19. After the planned 2020 conference in Småland, Sweden, was recast as a virtual event, attention shifted to the May 2021 conference, which was to mark the 50th anniversary of the artist organization, and had been planned to take place in Tacoma, Washington. Today it was announced that the celebration and the venue will remain the same, but take place on new dates -- May 18 through 21st, 2022 -- pushing the event a year ahead.
The Fall 2020 edition of Glass: The UrbanGlass Art Quarterly (#160) is hitting newsstands and subscriber mailboxes. On the cover is a self-portrait of Corey Pemberton, the cofounder of Crafting the Future, a nonprofit with a mission to expand the pool of artists who work with art from craft media, including glass, so that the field might become more diverse. Since the summer’s protests of police killings sparked a national dialogue about race that has reverberated across society, the art world has been challenged to reflect on how inclusive it has been. In the glass art field, where representation of people of color remains limited at best, it has sparked a necessary and overdue conversation about why racial disparity has persisted in this medium for expression, and what actions can be taken to change that. One focus of this issue of Glass is to illustrate the extent of the problem and to highlight potential paths toward progress, including the notable efforts of Pemberton and Crafting the Future cofounder Annie Evelyn.
UPDATED 6/28/20 7 PM In the first weeks of June, as Black Lives Matter protests swept the U.S. and the world, the Glass Art Society received a letter from artist, executive director, and educator Nate Watson, who provided a sharp critique of the glass-art community as a place with a lot of work to do to diversify. The letter was deemed so urgent, GAS published it online in advance of the release of its regularly scheduled newsletter.
The Summer 2020 edition of Glass: The UrbanGlass Art Quarterly (#159) is on newsstands and has arrived in subscriber mailboxes. In recognition of economic challenges facing artists at this moment, UrbanGlass is making it available at a Pay What You Can rate. The typographic cover design consists of a jumble of weather-beaten red letters spelling out "survival" with the rips repaired with clear tape. It's an issue about rebuilding after adversity, and it's told through the words of glass artists.
As stay-at-home orders were issued across the U.S. in mid-March, we at Glass: The UrbanGlass Art Quarterly made the decision to scrap our plans for the next issue. It wasn't that the artists we'd been planning to feature had become any less important, but the overpowering sense we would be entering a new era facing down a serious threat not only to our health but our livelihoods. The moment demanded something different, and so we decided to produce a special issue.
Judith Schaechter's major career retrospective at the Rochester Memorial Art Gallery may have been forced to "go virtual" a month after its February 2020 opening because of statewide stay-at-home orders due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but the Philadelphia-based artist will engage in a public conversation with the exhibition's curator, Jessica Marten, the museum's curator in charge and curator of American art. The live event, scheduled to take place from 6 PM to 7 PM on Thursday, May 7, will be available for free via Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/events/1081907148844560/), where you can not only listen in on a discussion of the career and artwork of an artist singularly responsible for expanding the realm of expressive possibility in the medium of stained glass, but also submit your questions.
Glass: The UrbanGlass Quarterly, a glossy art magazine published four times a year by UrbanGlass has provided a critical context to the most important artwork being done in the medium of glass for more than 40 years.