The Agnes Varis Art Center gallery and store will be closed on Tuesday, August 20th, 2019 for our regularly scheduled inventory count. 

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Micah Evans' curtain of black threads burning at the beginning of his Third Thursday performance at the Chrysler Museum of Art Glass Studio. courtesy: chrysler museum of art.

Monday July 31, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

CONVERSATION: Flameworker Micah Evans puts on show at Chrysler Museum

Washington State-native flameworker Micah Evans does not consider himself a performance artist, but he undoubtedly put on a show for the Chrysler Museum of Art in Norfolk, Virginia, recently while working as a visiting artist from July 20th to 23rd. Evans grew up in Seattle, Washington in the 1990s, surrounded by a culture heavily saturated with marijuana and glass pipe-making. This environment presented Evans with a less-than-traditional gateway into glass art, as he got his start by making smoke pipes at a local flameworking studio. Evans’ work has since expanded to include traditional craft forms and personal sculptural work, which lead him to be recognized as the first flameworker to receive a residency at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina, which he completed from 2012 until 2015.

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Inna Babaeva, Men O’war, 2017, glass, H 36. W 36, D 36 in. courtesy: sarah thaw

Friday July 28, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

SEEN: A real estate company turns unlikely spaces into showcases for contemporary art

Contemporary art is on display in unexpected spaces within New York City and beyond thanks to the Art-in-Buildings program, an initiative by real-estate company Time Equities, Inc. that is transforming windows into non-traditional exhibition spaces. The program was founded in 2001 by Time Equities, Inc. CEO Francis Greenburger, who, after walking into an empty lobby in one of his downtown Manhattan properties, decided that the space would be a perfect place to display art. Since that initial idea, the concept has grown to include building fronts in many different sites -- from the Financial District and other areas in New York City, to buildings across the United States and in three different countries -- and over 110 artists have been featured in its rotating exhibitions.Currently on view at the program's West 10th Window, a street-level storefront window located in Manhattan’s West Village that has featured unique artists in short-term exhibitions since 2012 is an installation by Ukraine-born, New York-based artist Inna Babaeva, who frequently employs glass in her work (Disclosure: The work was fabricated at the studios of UrbanGlass, the nonprofit arts center that published the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet as well as the print publication GLASS.). Eliana Blechman, the curatorial assistant and exhibitions coordinator of Time Equities’ Art-in-Buildings program, said that said she and her fellow curators “scour the internet, galleries and magazines” for unique artists to invite to display their work in the space.

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Carried on Both Sides, research image, 2016. courtesy: the artist

Tuesday July 25, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

Artist Talk: Past, present, and imagined future of @ symbol explored in collaborative inquiry

New York-based artist Caroline Woolard set out to satisfy her curiosity about the links between an ancient container to transport liquids and a ubiquitous symbol of our contemporary digital moment. For good measure, she extends this inquiry into speculation on how this typographical element might further evolve. This journey into the past, present, and imagined future of the symbol for digital communication "@" is the subject of her project Carried on Both Sides, which she will be discussing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art this Friday evening, July 28, 2017 with her collaborators present. To realize the project, Woolard partnered with glass artists Helen Lee and Alexander Rosenberg as well as textile artist Lika Volkova during residencies at the Pilchuck Glass School and UrbanGlass. She explained her intent for Carried on Both Sides in her proposal for the residency at Pilchuck as a project “that traces the transmutation of an ancient vessel into a common computer symbol -- the @ [at sign]. Our work links 6th-century terra cotta and glass amphorae to the handwritten @ of 16th century mercantile scripts to the ubiquitous contemporary vector graphic we use in email and in social media.”

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Verena Schatz, Bundle, 2015. borosilicate tubes, slumped. H 53 1/2, W 14, D 14 in. courtesy: Hans-Martin Lorch

Thursday July 20, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

OPENING: Berlin gallery devotes summer to exhibition of high-level student work in glass

Jens Gussek, an accomplished artist in his own right and a winner of the 2015 International Glass Prize in Lommel, Belgium, has also worked steadily as a university professor throughout his career. He currently holds the title of Head of the Institute of Ceramic and Glass Art (IKKG) at the University of Applied Science in Koblenz, Germany. A unique exhibition of work by 11 of his former students is opening at a commercial gallery in Berlin this summer, a testament to the caliber of work Gussek has helped his students achieve. Entitled “subtext glas(s),” the exhibition opens July 22 and will run through September 2, 2017, at the lorch+seidel contemporary gallery in Berlin, Germany.

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Plan of "One Map of Many Moments" in Fort Greene Park. courtesy: Amanda Patenaud

Wednesday July 19, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

Broken glass knits a community as artist Amanda Patenaude facilitates a public mosaic project

Brooklyn-based artist Amanda Patenaude has proved that one person’s trash can literally become another person's treasure, as she facilitated a community project to recast dangerous shards of broken glass into works of art. It all began in 2014, when a public park association known as the Fort Greene Park Conservancy (FGPC) turned to nearby arts nonprofit UrbanGlass in search of an artist to make use out of all the broken glass swept up in their efforts to beautify this urban green space. Patenaude, who describes her practice as “a nice blend of working with garbage and the things we throw away, as they relate back to our habits and the environments we inhabit,” was a perfect fit.The Brooklyn-based artist presented the FGPC with a list of what could be accomplished with the waste glass and from there, the work began. After six months of clean-up, the discarded glass that was accumulated was re-melted and blown into an ornament that was presented at a 2015 tree-lighting ceremony organized by FGPC and the community organization known as the Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project.

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René Lalique, Moissac, 1930. Opalescent Glass. H 5 in. courtesy: hickmet fine arts.

Thursday July 13, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

Museum exhibit explores context of René Lalique’s groundbreaking designs in jewelry and glassware

FILED UNDER: Exhibition, Museums
French artist and designer René Lalique mastered jewelry, he mastered glass; but at the core of it all, Lalique mastered the ability to innovate and evolve in response to the rapidly changing cultural landscape of fin de siècle France, as the 19th century gave way to the 20th. To provide a glimpse into the inner workings of Lalique’s mind— presenting the audience with a new point of view on the sources of inspiration behind his highly designed creations— Musée Lalique in Wingen-sur-Moder, France is displaying “Back to the sources: The world that inspired Lalique,” an exhibition that will remain on view until November 5, 2017

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The exterior of the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, with its signature chimney that vents its active glass studio in its center. courtesy: museumofglass.org

Wednesday July 12, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

Taking a page from Corning’s successful GlassFest, the Northwest glass museum launches public event

FILED UNDER: Announcements, Events, Museums
GlassFest is the massive four-day glass art celebration that has taken the Gaffer District in Corning, New York, by storm. Although the event is sponsored and supported by the world-renowned Corning Museum of Glass, it is the business association known as the Corning Gaffer District itself which throws the event — closing its Historic Market Street off to car traffic to instead fill the space with art, food and entertainment vendors. Having completed its 8th celebration in May 2017, GlassFest has become a cherished community event celebrating glass artistry in and around the town of Corning, proving that glass can thrive outside the walls of the famed museum and setting a precedent for other cities to follow. Taking a page (and the name) from the New York event, the Museum of Glass in Tacoma will be co-hosting its first ever glass festival, Glass Fest Northwest, a free event to showcase Pacific Northwest glasswork. Taking place on Sunday, July 23rd from 12 noon to 5 PM, the event will feature over two dozen local artists and artisans who will join together with area art institutions to celebrate, display and sell artwork made from glass. There will also be live glassmaking demonstrations, food, beer and wine, music and family-oriented activities for the community to partake in.

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courtesy: karlis bogustovs

Monday July 10, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

Themes of innovation and sustainability explored at decennial “Young Glass” juried exhibition

A lot can change in 10 years, and at the once-a-decade exhibition "Young Glass," the progression within glass art is on full display. Since it's launch in 1987 at the Glasmuseet Ebeltoft in Denmark, the competition has intended to inspire and encourage innovation in the realm of glass art. 

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courtesy: engravedglass.cz

Monday July 10, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: International Symposium of Engraved Glass in Kamenický Šenov

Applications are still being accepted for the 7th International Symposium of Engraved Glass in Kamenický Šenov, Czech Republic. Registration for active participation is open until July 15, 2017 for the event taking place September 11- 17, 2017 at the Kamenický Šenov Glass Museum.

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Amy Lemaire, History of the Present Moment, 2013-2017, Glass, mixed materials, Diameter 60 in. courtesy: the artist

Tuesday June 6, 2017 | by Sarah Thaw

OPENING: Amy Lemaire’s “History of the Present Moment” documents life in the age of Twitter

Brooklyn-based multidisciplinary artist Amy Lemaire explores themes of history as a form of currency in her upcoming exhibit, "History of the Present Moment." The exhibition, which will include glass sculptures seeking to ignite thought and conversation around modern historical documentation, will be on display from June 7 to June 28 in the Window Gallery at UrbanGlass’ Agnes Varis Art Center. (Disclosure: The GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet is published by UrbanGlass.)

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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 35 years.