Scholarships: support them; apply for them. Don’t let stained glass become a Lost Art!

photo5Thank you Carol Schaller for your delightful comment below. I started this blog as a way for Carol and others at Trinity Episcopal in Branford, Connecticut to follow their commission. Starting with my very first post in April 2013 are dozens of descriptions of  the different stages of making Trinty’s stained glass windows. Type Trinity in the Search box and you’ll be inundated with work-in-progress photos and technical information.  These include glasspainting and design, the subjects of my May 2020 workshops.

It was once feared that stained glass would become ‘a lost art’ but the tide has turned in recent years. Thank goodness! Younger artists are taking an interest, many with the support of two US organizations that work tirelessly to keep stained glass alive and thriving.

The Stained Glass Association of America (SGAA) is a vital community of stained glass artists, artisans and aficionados of stained glass. The American Glass Guild (AGG) is a nationwide group of equally dedicated independent artists and professionals. Both organizations encourage and promote the creation of new work and the conservation of stained glass. Both have also, for 13 years now, generously supported my workshops with tuition scholarships. Please support them if you can.

Donate to the American Guild Guild

Donate to the Stained Glass Association of America

Here’s my schedule of 2020 stained glass workshops for stained glass professionals and serious amateurs. Check out the websites above for info on their scholarships.

ps I will also be offering residential art-making vacations for non-professionals during 2020 but these workshops will NOT be eligible for scholarships from the trade guilds.

pps I do recommend reading The Lost Art: a Survey of 1,000 years of stained glass by Robert Sowers.

 

May 2020 Stained Glass Design and Glasspainting Workshops

In response to student feedback I’m offering a series of three tightly structured 5-day workshops in May 2020. Two are for advanced students only and designed to take your stained glass practice to a new level.

Instruction includes Powerpoint presentations, technical demonstration, hands-on group exercises and individual projects. In these workshops I will teach practical skills and repeatable, step-by-step processes that are difficult to learn online or figure out on your own. For example, mixing glasspaint to optimum viscosity and drying speed for various tools and brushes; and gaining a clear understanding of the work-flow for designing or painting a stained glass window.

Here’s the history of my proprietary stained glass recipe, and here’s my beautifully responsive glasspainting mixture in action

Workshop location? Watch me glasspainting and assembling a stained glass window in my Vermont studio where these May 2020 workshops will be held  (11 min video).

About me? This recent podcast covers my career as a stained glass artist and includes the mathematics I’ve been working on in recent years. Many thanks to interviewer Shawn Waggonner, she really got me to open up!

Check out the drop-down menu items under GLASS to read workshop descriptions and more.

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 2019 Glasspainting Workshops

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If you know of anyone else who may be interested in taking a weeklong glasspainting workshop with me in October please pass on this message. All the info is on my website, links below. Dates are Oct 21-25 (intro) and Oct 29 – Nov 1st (advanced). Last year I canceled to be with my Dad before he died. It was hard, but the right decision. Thanks for waiting. I am so looking forward to meeting those of you who did.

Luis Gianera, a wonderful stained glass artist from Buenos Aires just posted an appreciation of this 4 minute video showing me painting stained glass roses in real time using my proprietary mixture. This is the technique I will be teaching in October. The image here shows separate pieces of glass on the light table. No lead. In the bottom rh corner the glass has been painted and fired only once. Multiple firings allow you to permanently fix good strong tracelines then -without losing what you’ve already done -experiment with textural effects and matting techniques.
Luis was unable to study directly with me. Instead, we corresponded, he read my Notes for Students and figured out how to use these methods himself. Beautifully. To all my other blog and Facebook followers – now from 46 different countries around the world; Happy Glasspainting!
      Videos of me glasspainting in real time (scroll down past the math)

Mountain Laurel

Mathematical art geometry raised 3D Penrose tiling by Debora Coombs & Duane Bailey at Williams College

Mountain Laurel (oblique view)

 

Mountain Laurel is one of three recently completed sculptures now on display in the Schow Science Library at Williams College. They show an area of three-dimensional Penrose tiling that continues to infinity in all directions. This ongoing series is a collaboration with my friend computer scientist Duane Bailey who has spent 30+ years investigating Penrose tiling. Our exhibition is called a.periodicity a mathematical term for this curious symmetry.

The sculptures are structurally identical -all precisely the same size and shape. But each is coloured differently according to some aspect of the mathematics. Mountain Laurel provides insight into the relationship between 2D and 3D versions of Penrose tiling.

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In two-dimensions Penrose tiling requires two different shapes to construct; a fat rhombus and a skinny rhombus. Although each tile in the sculpture is identical, Mountain Laurel codes them according to the shadow they would project onto a flat surface. Green tiles would project the shadow of a skinny rhombus in 2D. Pink tiles would create the shadow of a fat rhombus in 2D.

In all three sculptures, colour enables us to see unexpected shapes and patterns when the sculpture is viewed from different angles. Mountain Laurel is built from identical rhombi -the tiles are all the same shape – but the composition yields marvelously irregular patterns. Shapes and rhythms appear and disintegrate as you move around the sculpture.

 

The back of the sculpture provided its title Mountain Laurel. Here’s work in progress with binder clips and reverse-engineered clothes pins.

Aperiodic tilings are mathematical models for quasicrystals, physical solids that were discovered in 1982 by Dan Shechtman who subsequently won the Nobel prize for his work in 2011. I’ve also built them in stained glass, with mathematical rules encoded into the surface pattern.

 

 

 

 

Exhibition of new work at Williams College

This week I hung three newly completed mathematical sculptures in the Schow Science Library at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. I’m excited to be able to share this new work, made in collaboration with computer scientist Duane Bailey. It’s the first public showing of our series of three-dimensional Penrose tilings. The exhibit is in the Schow Science Library and open extended hours. See Williams College Visitor Guide for location and directions. Contact me if you’d like a tour.

Photos above by Adam Kozik.

Below, assembling Cloaking Device.

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2018 stained glass design and painting workshops

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I am offering three 5-day workshops in September 2018 at my studio in Vermont. Here’s a schedule and some general information.

For those interested in scholarships, application deadlines for the American Glass Guild James C Whitney Memorial Scholarship is March 19th. And for the Stained Glass Association of America’s Dorothy L. Maddy Workshop/Seminar Scholarship and Albinas Elskus Scholarship the application deadline is April 13th.

September 10th-14th, TRACE & TEXTURE 5-day intro to GLASSPAINTING FOR ARTISTS is open to all. Excellent for artists in all/any media (not just stained glass). Tuition $860, includes lunches and materials.

September 17th-21st, STAINED GLASS DESIGN, STEP BY STEP, All levels. Tuition $825 includes lunches and materials. Check out this post Why Teach Stained Glass Design.

Sept 24th-28th, ADVANCED GLASSPAINTING  is a workshop for those wanting coaching on a specific project or glasspainting topic/subject; familiar with my techniques and wanting a refresher; or simply interested in taking their skills to the next level. Tuition $860, includes lunches and materials.

Above: painted glass on the light table from the Archie Hanna Memorial window at Trinity Episcopal in Branford Connecticut. I started this blog in April 2013 to share the entire process with the congregation. There are lots and lots of posts to read…

Closing in for Carroll College

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Final stages of glasspainting on the two clerestory windows for All Saints Chapel at Carroll College, Helena, Montana.

Glass painting (8 second time-lapse)

setting out ready to fire in the kiln (4 second time-lapse)

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