Published on June 1, 2021 for ICFF - Link

KEEP: Fire & Ice

Keep Susan Spiranovich Adam Holtzinger

Adam Holtzinger and Susan Spiranovich are the husband-and-wife team behind Brooklyn-based glassblowing studio KEEP. Both graduates of Cleveland Institute of Art, Holtzinger discovered the art of glass after visiting the school’s glassblowing studio, where he immediately fell in love with the craft. Years later, Spiranovich is also obsessed with the ancient craft, and together they have a team that operates out of UrbanGlass in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

“Adam and I came here specifically for the creative energy that exists in NYC,” says Spiranovich. “We came to Brooklyn to make glass. After years of working with artists, designers, and architects, we knew right off the bat that we wanted to make lighting together. Lighting is what gives life to a room. It’s the ultimate accessory and is so important in every space.”

With the goal of maintaining the craft of glass blowing, KEEP utilizes traditional Italian techniques to create contemporary work with exquisite craftsmanship and signature patterning. Just like old-world masters, KEEP maintains a small team-based glassmaking crew that crafts glass the same way it was done thousands of years ago.

“Collaboration is everything,” says Holtzinger. “Taking somebody else’s ideas and thoughts and translating them into glass through our hands is the ultimate expression of this collaboration. There’s something really magical that happens when you combine different perspectives that brings a whole new level to the process. KEEP is working together to create something beautiful.”

While KEEP creates a diverse roster of lighting and objects, one thing that stays consistent is their dedication to doing the craft the right way.

“One of our favorite things to make is our cane collection” says Holtzinger. “The technique is old but we’re making it ours. We’re making it new, we’re making it contemporary.”

The Cane collection follows the techniques of old master glassmakers and includes the Cane Globe Pendant and a newly introduced Cane Drum.

“What I love most about the cane series is it starts with pulling out these really long rods of color,” says Spiranovich. ”They get chopped up, rolled up, and blown up, and every part of the process has to be exact. And it’s really beautiful to watch this rhythmic dance with out team. It’s like we don’t have to say much, our bodies just move and respond to the material and that’s really special.”

Aside from lighting, the studio also has the Zephyr bowls and Re:Gather drinkware collection within its offerings, yet everything is made to order and at KEEP, nothing is off-limits.

“We’ve fabricated everything from lighting to stemware to giant gold-covered glass figures,” Spiranovich. “Theres no project too big or too small. We really do thrive on working with like-minded people. People who are just as excited about working with glass, who design art, who have the same energy and excitement for this material. And to know that we have a hand in their process. That’s what it’s all about.”