The climates in Seattle and Ireland are very similar but I must admit the weather is better in Seattle! It’s a wonderful environment in which to be creative. The Evergreen State and the Emerald Isle are equally lush but in different shades of green. Both are home.
When I started art school I thought I would study textiles, but when I entered a hot shop and saw students working in hot glass, I was completely transfixed. I knew there and then that I wanted to work in that material. I may add that I had absolutely no natural affinity for it—I once spent two hours trying to blow a bubble into a solid piece of metal! I moved here specifically because of the glass industry—the talent and resources are second to none. I think what distinguishes the Seattle glass scene is the supportive community. It’s really special.
I love how glass holds color. My blown glass works are studies in form, color and line. My work in leaded glass, inspired by my printmaking, explores how light moves through glass—luminous, when backlit in light boxes, or transparent in natural light.
Traver Gallery and Vetri specialize in some of the finest artists working in glass. Foster White also features talented glass artists. Pilchuck Glass School has a great exhibition space in Pioneer Square, featuring work by artists associated with its Stanwood campus. Good places to watch glassblowing include the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Seattle Glassblowing Studio in Belltown, Totally Blown Glassworks in Georgetown and Chihuly Garden and Glass, which features onsite glassblowing November to May. The artistically inclined can take a custom four-hour glassblowing class at Pratt Fine Arts Center—where some of our best teaching artists work.
Some of my highlights are the Northwest African American Museum, the Frye Museum, Woodside Braseth Gallery, SAM’s Olympic Sculpture Park and of course Method, the installation gallery I cofounded four years ago. There are so many amazing places to see art!
Interview by Brangien Davis. Photo taken at Totally Blown Glassworks.