In Portland, Oregon, when he was just 10 years old, Brandyn Callahan began learning how to make fused glass from his mother. His interest in glass led him to flameworking and glassblowing classes, and after high school, a glassblowing apprenticeship. Brandyn now lives in Seattle, Washington, where he works in private glass studios. This summer, he came to The Studio for the first time on a Celebrity Cruises Glassmaking Scholarship to take Goblet Thinking for the Modern World with instructor and glass artist Michael Schunke.
The focus of this class was on designing and creating goblets with the appeal of a modern aesthetic that can “have a sense of grace and beauty in the form” without the ornate style of the historical precedence of Venetian glass. Maintaining a focus on functionality was fundamental to this class, and to this end, Brandyn spent the week concentrating on making clean components and managing appropriate proportions in his pieces.
He is dedicated to gaining proficiency in glass, and he says, “Goblets are a great way to build skills as a technical glassblower.” Michael Schunke’s goblets “flow really well together, none of his parts seem disjointed, and I’m trying to take that from this class and his work.”
Brandyn comes from a part of the country that has been influential to the Studio Glass movement over the last several decades, but he was excited to visit Corning, a town which he says has “such a rich tradition of people blowing glass, engraving glass, and being in the glass industry… for hundreds of years.” His time was well-spent immersed in the culture of glass – so much so that his initial week-long stay turned into two weeks. In addition to time spent in class, Brandyn found “so much material to soak in” within the Museum collections and the Rakow Research Library. “I’ve wanted to come to Corning for a long time,” he says. “I feel honored to have been given the scholarship.”
See the 1-hour Live-Stream demonstration from Michael Schunke: Goblet Thinking for the Modern World: http://youtu.be/PRPP3yZMvbw?hd=1