Pilchuck, Corning, Istanbul, Amsterdam! US, Scotland, Italy, Germany! Summer is the time when kids head to summer camp and glass-aholics dream of studying with “rock star” glass artists in exotic places. Opportunities abound in the US and around the world. And don't forget to check the wonderful classes offered by NCAGG members.
Pilchuck Glass School - Washington
It has become the largest, most comprehensive educational center in the world for artists working in glass. Its artistic and educational programs take place on a serene fifty four acre wooded campus fifty miles north of Seattle, WA. NCAGG member Nina Falk took one of their summer sessions in 2006 and says: “Attending the Pilchuck Glass School was definitely the highlight of my summer. Unlike Penland and Haystack, everyone is doing glass, intensely. Apparently each session has its own character; mine was very mellow, and I understand the one that followed was more dynamic. We were welcome to move freely between different classes, and incorporate different techniques into our projects. Pilchuck is situated on a tree farm with an amazing view of the water....it's a little paradise, and I recommend it to all glass artists.”
Penland School of Craft - North Carolina
It is a national center for craft education located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Penland has grown to encompass about 400 acres and 41 structures. Over 1,200 people from all over the world come each year seeking instruction in ten craft media (clay, drawing, glass, metal, photography, printmaking, textiles, wood etc). The school offers one and two-week classes in the summer and workshops throughout the year. Our own Liz Mears studied at Penland when she began flameworking and returned to teach there. NCAGG member Janet Wittenberg attended a two-week sessional at Penland in the summer of 2010 and says: "I was interested in attending after learning that the very talented glass artist Alex Gabriel Bernstein, the son of two glass artists, would be teaching a session in sandcasting, coldworking, moldmaking and more. We tried out our newly acquired skills in the glass studio. Presentations were held every evening, as well as parties and gallery openings. There was also an incredible July 4th celebration and a parade of floats made by each studio. Ours was a fire breathing dragon with glass scales! Penland was a truly worthy educational and cultural experience."
Pittsburgh Glass Center - Pennsylvania
The first open and comprehensive glass art studio and gallery in Southwestern Pennsylvania, is a non-profit organization, dedicated to teaching, creating and promoting glass art. PGC invites you to explore their 16,000+ square foot facility housing state of the art studios in hot glass, flameworking, coldworking, casting and kilnworking! The Pittsburgh Glass Center was the leading host organization for the 2007 Glass Art Society Conference.
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts - Maine
The school in Deer Isle, ME offers intensive studio based workshops in a variety of craft media including clay, glass, metals, paper, blacksmithing, weaving, woodworking and more. Programs range from short workshops to three-week sessions and anyone may participate, from beginners to advanced professionals.
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts - Tennessee
It is a nationally renowned center of contemporary arts and crafts education. Workshops are offered for one and two weeks in the spring and summer, and one-week and weekends in the fall. Areas of study include: ceramics, fibers, metals/jewelry, painting, drawing, photography, warm glass, woodturning, woodworking, sculpture, and book and paper arts. The public is welcome year-round to visit the school’s five galleries, resource center, and bookstore and supply store. Artist residencies, assistantships, work-study, scholarships, community outreach, conferences, and music programs contribute to Arrowmont’s mission of “enriching lives through art.”
NCAGG's experience with Arrowmont has blossomed in the last few years as several of our members have taught there, including Kari Minnick, Liz Mears and Liz Braun. A number of our members enjoyed Brad Walker’s Warm Glass conference that was held at Arrowmont in 2006. NCAGG member Jerre Davidson writes: “I was very fortunate to get to go to both Corning and Arrowmont for the Warm Glass Weekend in 2007. I did not manage to attend any of the pre- or post-conference workshops, but enjoyed the company of so many glass fanatics and the conference presentations very much. The food was excellent and there was lots of it. The accommodation was a little Spartan and if you ever go I would recommend taking your own towels! The surrounding countryside in both Gatlinburg and Corning is beautiful and breathtaking.”
The Studio of the Corning Museum of Glass - New York
This is an internationally renowned teaching facility that also offers various residency and scholarship programs. Instructors from the US and abroad teach at The Studio, sharing their insight and wisdom. Students at The Studio range in experience from beginning to advanced, fueled by their passion and desire to create. Classes at The Studio are held throughout the year. Spring and fall classes typically include ten-week sessions that meet once per week, weekend sessions, and one-day sessions. Summer and winter classes are generally one week or two weeks in length. NCAGG member Martin Kremer taught a class in summer 2010 and again in 2011 along with Kari Minnick.
Bullseye Glass - Oregon, New Mexico
The well-known glass manufacturer offers every year a variety of classes and workshops as well as private custom classes in kilnforming, kilncasting, torchwork and coldwork, taught by many well-known American and international artists. Classes are held in Portland and Santa Fe primarily in spring and summer and range from a few hours to a few days. BE also offers educational material online including many instructional videos.
North Lands Creative Glass - Scotland
It is situated in Lybster, a small fishing village on the North East Coast of Scotland. North Lands is open both to glass artists and to painters, sculptors, architects and designers wishing to explore the technical and artistic potential of glass either on its own or in combination with other materials. Through its program of summer master classes, its annual conference and its residencies, North Lands aims to stimulate a lively exchange of ideas whilst also allowing time for reflection and action in a professional environment. North Lands was born in the nineties out of a need to create a center of excellence to stimulate the growing interest in the possibilities of glass as an art form. Our own Judith Conway has taught at North Lands while Dave Studley enjoyed taking classes there and Martin Kremer was a resident artist in 2010.
The Glass Furnace - Turkey
It offers classes in Istanbul taught by international masters including many glass artists from the US. The director of the school visited NCAGG while he was representing Turkey in the Smithsonian’s Silk Road Folklife Festival in 2002. NCAGG Member Nina Falk has a first-hand report from her visit to the school although she has not yet studied there. She writes: “The Glass Furnace is located outside a small village, in a beautiful peaceful country setting, with completely modern facilities - studios, gallery, dorms, swimming pool. To get there you need to ride the boat bus to the end of the line (a good way to see the city) and then take a taxi for almost an hour! We didn't have a lot of time when we finally reached the school, but it was worth every minute. Classes are held during the whole summer for multiple sessions, and teachers and students come from all over the world. Everyone was very friendly and the fees are much lower than elsewhere, so even with the transportation costs it is not more expensive than elsewhere. I hope to return someday.”
Creative Glass - Switzerland, UK, Austria, Hungary
Creative Glass is based in Volketswil, Switzerland, east of Zürich, and has three other locations in Europe. It offers a large collection of courses in all aspects of glass art. Our own Judith Conway of Vitrum Studio has taught there. It started in the 70's as a stained glass studio with supplies and classes and now offers a wide variety of classes in fusing, flameworking, beadmaking, casting etc., taught by artists from all over the world.
Pearsons Glass - UK
With three locations in London, Liverpool and East Kilbride, Scotland, the studio offers a variety of classes in many glass art aspects (fused, stained, beads, jewelry, mosaics etc), primarily in its Liverpool location. It also offers individual instruction. It cooperates with art organizations and educational institutions as well as glass practitioners and internationally renowned artists.
Bild-Werk Frauenau - Germany
An international art center at the Bavarian town of Frauenau with glass art at its core. Many courses are offered, primarily in the summer, in glass-cutting and engraving, flat glass design and glass painting, printing from glass plates, kiln and cast glass, hot glass at the furnace and lampworking. Frauenau and its museum is part of the so-called Glass Route in Germany, a 200-mile stretch through German towns with rich glass making traditions. The Route ends at the Passau Glass Museum, and showcases glass studios, museums and glass making festivals, viewing tours and exhibitions.
Van Tetterode Glassobjects - Netherlands
This architectural glass studio in Amsterdam offers many workshops in fusing, sand casting, kiln casting glass blowing, cold-working etc. The workshops are offered mainly in summer and fall for small groups and last one or two days, while week-long workshops can cover many techniques.
Miriam Di Fiore Studio - Italy
Diane Cabe recommends Miriam Di Fiore, an Argentinian artist living in Italy, near Pavia, about 2 hours SE of Milan. Her classes, attended by students from all over the world, include her own technique of creating landscapes in glass as well as painting and fusing. Classes are offered from May to September to small groups and usually last 5 to 8 days and include a free day to explore the area. Miriam Di Fiore also teaches frequently in the US in many places including Judith Conway's Vitrum Studio.
Glass School - Czech Republic
In 2011 Alan Jaworski visited Pavel Kopriva at the Glass School in Novy Bor, Czech Republic. Novy Bor historically has been a glass painting center and also has an excellent program in casting. They're interested in recruiting foreign students. It's more of a vocational school and high school for glass, but they seem to be willing to offer customized short courses.
National Glass Center - Spain
Alan Jaworski also recommends the Spanish National Glass Center in La Granja San Ildefonso. Among others Sante Pizzol, a well known Italian glass painter teaches there. You can find a wide variety of workshops and classes in fusing & slumping, beads, and glassblowing. Check also their Cursos Monograficos, their short course list.