Hot Glass Show Atlanta Style

The sleek and modern High Museum of Art

As I’m settling back into the swing of things in Seattle after my last ship contract, I am still spinning around like a top from the fabulous whirlwind that was The Corning Museum of Glass Hot Glass Roadshow’s visit to Atlanta. The High Museum of Art welcomed us with open arms into their arts- and culture-rich Midtown abode as we trucked and rolled our Hot Glass Show equipment right to their Sifly Piazza.

The Sifly Piazza with our hot shop set up under the tent

It took three days to set everything up and forklift a brand new beaut of a furnace onto our portable stilted stage. Fellow glassblowers, Eric Meek, Ian Schmidt and I were asked by passersby if we were setting up for a BBQ and we replied after laughing that no food would be cooking on this stage but that we’d be opening up everyone’s eyes to the wonderful possibilities of hot glass with five days of demonstrations. Then we asked if they knew of a good BBQ place in the area.

Eric Meek putting the finishing touches on the elephant holding a taco.

The High invited the Hot Glass Roadshow to help commemorate the 50th anniversary of the American Studio Glass Movement. Our show was free to the public and one of the absolute highlights was the field trip visit that many local schools took to come and visit us. It was wonderful to look out at the 300-plus sea of young faces day after day and see the delight and curiosity on their faces as we made various You Design It; We Make It pieces such as a penguin holding a candy cane, an owl, octopus, goldfish, etc. My favorite question to ask them was “Now, who wants to grow up and be a glassblower?” I always got a plethora of hands raised and waving wildly in response, which always makes me happy.

You Design It pieces: Penguin by Ian Schmidt, Owl by Eric Meek.

Check back soon for more from the Hot Glass Roadshow’s visit at The High, including photos from sessions with visiting artists Richard Jolley, Johanna Grawunder and Gyun Hur.

Until next time,

Ryan