This is a blown-glass ornament I made at a local glass art studio last week.
One of the great things about where we live is that there is a thriving arts scene, both visual and performing. An art form that Hubby and I both love is art glass. When he was in college, he studied under Stephen Rolfe Powell, a renowned glass artist who creates the most amazing glass pieces and is a master teacher. He has produced many accomplished students, several of whom have gone on to teaching glass work at a number of universities around the country.
"Winking Tangy Orb" by artist and Centre college professor Stephen Rolfe Powell
We're very fortunate to have two excellent glass blowing facilities in Louisville: Glassworks and Flame Run. Both studios create and sell gorgeous works of art and there are opportunities for the public to not only watch the artists in action, but to participate during special times of the year, such as the Christmas holidays.
An artist at work at Flame Run Glass Studio
Last week, a group of us went to Flame Run for their "Blow Your Own Ornament" sessions. Each of us picked out the colors we wanted to incorporate into our ornaments, then worked with one of the artists in creating the piece. You actually blow into a device while they instruct you as to how heavy or light you should blow in forming the ornament. Obviously, it's more the artist doing the work, but it's fun to be part of the process in creating a special ornament for your tree.
Glassworks, meanwhile, hosts these events beyond just Christmas. In honor of St. Patrick's Day, you can blow your own beer mug; for Valentine's Day, a heart; for Halloween, a pumpkin; and on and on. Each studio also offers classes on glass blowing.
So, if you're ever in the area, perhaps plan a visit to one of our glass art studios. Or, if you have one in your city, be sure to stop by and watch the artists at work. It's spellbinding. And always consider glass art as a gift. Some of the pieces are very affordable, from bowls to jewelry, they make great gifts and conversation pieces.
Images courtesy of Glassworks, Flame Run Gallery and Stephen Rolfe Powell