Five Minutes with Brendan Fernandes

First-time Visiting Artist Brendan Fernandes will work in the Museum of Glass Hot Shop from August 31 through September 4. The Canadian artist draws upon his Kenyan and Indian heritage, using his art to examine the nature of identity. In his newest body of work, Fernandes is returning to his training in dance and his interest in movement and choreography.

Learn about the Visiting Artist before he begins his residency this week!

Brendan Fernandes working; Photo courtesy of the artist.

Brendan Fernandes working; Photo courtesy of the artist.

I became interested in dance and movement when…

I was a young boy; there was always dancing and singing as part of every family party. It was second nature to me!    

During my Museum of Glass residency, I hope to…

Use glass in a way that mimics and represents the body in motion.

I chose to explore cultural identity in my work because…

This is my story. I come from a hybrid background and have lived in different places. These experiences make-up who I am; I am exploring my personal trajectory and telling my narrative. It is part of my own self discovery and one that I want to share with others in the hopes that they can find similarities with the questions I am working through.     

If I had to work with only one color, it would be…

Ohhhhh, Hmmmm I would say clear. The optical qualities of light filtering through it always amazing me.  So no color!

Being an artist has taught me…

To me humble and self reflective.

Plan a visit to Museum of Glass to see Visiting Artist Brendan Fernandes working in the Hot Shop from August 31 through September 4, or watch his residency online.

Five Minutes with Bryan Kekst Brown

Bryan Kekst Brown is the Visiting Artist at Museum of Glass this week. Brown comes to the Hot Shop through the Museum’s Visiting Artist Residency application program, which invites artists from all over the world to apply.

Photo courtesy of Bryan Kekst Brown.

Photo courtesy of Bryan Kekst Brown.

Catch up with Brown before his residency begins!

My favorite medium to work with is…

Metal, for quite some time. Even more so as I have been exploring its malleability and the variety of metals that can be worked with. The difference between these various materials and their inherent properties fascinates me. Recently, since I have had access to a torch for working with borosilicate glass, I have really enjoyed  how tactile the medium is. I have read about the physical properties of glass but understanding those properties through your hands is a different experience.

The body of work I will be developing during my residency is…

Some of my recent work and taking it to a different level, in regards to scale. The work will also be slightly different in process or media, such as blowing into 3D printed cages without an exterior mold, documenting the electro-forming process as a video, and working with different physical processes to create an abstract definition of time.

I am most inspired by…

The phenomena that we experience as the physical world and how it operates based on a set of information.

I incorporate 3D-printed structures into my work by…

Designing 3D-printed cages to blow glass into. In the past I have used a plaster printer to print the actual blow mold. The cages fit into the blow mold and the glass takes the form of the mold as well as becoming stuck in the cage. The cages for this residency are designed with multiple layers to manipulate the way that the glass flows through.

In my spare time I…

Am currently trying to learn how to work with borosilicate glass. I try to get out into nature when I can as well, going on hikes or backpacking trips.

Plan a visit to Museum of Glass to see Visiting Artist Bryan Kekst Brown working in the Hot Shop from August 24 through 28, or watch his residency online.

The Season of Hilltop Artists

By Bonnie Wright, Curator of Education and Community Engagement

There’s so much Hilltop Artists programming in the community this summer and fall, both at Museum of Glass and in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood!

Hilltop Artists students and the Museum of Glass Hot Shop Team.

Hilltop Artists students and the Museum of Glass Hot Shop Team.

Hilltop Artists Residency, August 10-14

Hilltop Artists worked in the Museum of Glass Hot Shop last week making centerpieces for their Better Futures Luncheon. Check out MOG’s Meet the Artist video featuring these young students!

Hilltop Street Fair, August 27

Come visit both the Museum of Glass booth and the Hilltop Artists booth at the Hilltop Street Fair from 11 am to 7 pm on Saturday, August 27! Celebrate art, music, and fun activities in the Hilltop neighborhood on Martin Luther King Way between 9th and 13th Streets.

Hilltop Artists Make Your Own Glass Floats at MOG, September 24-25

Try your hand at blowing glass, guided by a Hilltop Artist at Museum of Glass! Make your own glass float to celebrate the opening weekend of the Into the Deep exhibition!

Photo courtesy of Hilltop Artists.

Photo courtesy of Hilltop Artists.

Hilltop Artists Make Your Own Glass Pumpkins at MOG, October 1-2 & 29-30

You’ve tried blowing glass….now, how about sculpting it? Kick off your fall with this unique paperweight workshop, led by a Hilltop Artist!

Make Your Own

And don’t forget, you can catch Hilltop Artists working in the Museum of Glass Hot Shop on the Third Thursday of each month from 5 to 8 pm!

Bonnie Wright is the Curator of Education and Community Engagement at Museum of Glass. A newcomer to the west coast, Bonnie can often be found exploring Tacoma, Seattle, and the region’s natural wonders.

Add “Every Soil Bears Not Everything” to Your Home

By Haley Judson, Marketing and Communications Intern

No trip to Museum of Glass is complete without browsing the gift shop. Celebrate the final weeks of the Museum’s exhibition Joey Kirkpatrick and Flora C. Mace: Every Soil Bears Not Everything with a nature-themed token to remind you of your visit.

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For those who want to learn more about the exhibition, open through September 6, and other works created by these two Studio Glass artists, pick up a copy of the Joey Kirkpatrick and Flora C. Mace catalogue for $55. Readers will enjoy the book’s discussion of their pieces that reflect the natural world, such as the artists’ Botanicals series.

Visitors should also check out the Museum Store’s selection of fruit that showcases vibrant colors seen in the exhibition. Want to add some fruit to your home? The yellow apple is $90 and the red apple is $65. Both are pictured above.

Although the Botanicals portion of the exhibition has closed, visitors are still treated to the artists’ floral designs found on their Alphabet Cylinders. Feeling the flower power? Check out the Store’s selection of glass flowers for your home. Our flowers come in all shapes and sizes, but I think this yellow flower, pictured above, in particular will remind you why Kirkpatrick and Mace are inspired by nature. These flowers are $50 each. Smaller flower sets are available in-store and online for $30.

Lastly, birds also play a prominent role in the exhibition. Add a little nature décor to your home with the Store’s variety of Global Village Glass Studio creatures. Choose from mini birds for $10 and lady bugs for $1.

Become a Museum of Glass member and save 10% every time you shop at the Museum Store. You’ll also enjoy extra seasonal discounts throughout the year!

Care and Handling of Artwork at Museum of Glass: Protection from Fire, Water, and Pests

By Rebecca Engelhardt, Collections and Exhibitions Manager

As part of our ongoing series on the care of artwork at Museum of Glass (MOG), this post reviews the methods that we use to protect our collections from fire, water, and pests.

The Curatorial department at MOG works closely with our colleagues in the Security and Facilities departments to monitor for the threat of fire, water, and pests.

Fire

Insuring that our smoke detectors and fire extinguishers are properly installed, accessible, and inspected lowers the threat of fire.

Deborah Oropallo, Untitled (from the Under Fire series), 2002. Collection of Museum of Glass

Deborah Oropallo, Untitled (from the Under Fire series), 2002. Collection of Museum of Glass

Careful storage of flammable chemicals in specially designed cabinets, like this one, isolates them away from the artwork we have on display and in storage.

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Leaks and Floods

Much like your own home, damage from rising groundwater or from broken plumbing is a risk to our collection. Undetected or remedied leaks or floods will result in water damage of objects, and could lead to mold, another thread to the collection.

Martin Blank, Fluent Steps, 2008. Extra care is taken to monitor the effects of the climate on this outdoor sculpture at the Museum. Our Curatorial staff works with engineers and conservators who are specially trained in this material.

Martin Blank, Fluent Steps, 2008. Extra care is taken to monitor the effects of the climate on this outdoor sculpture at the Museum. Our Curatorial staff works with engineers and conservators, who are specially trained in this material.

We monitor the building for any leaks and keep a fully-stocked set of disaster response supplies at hand.

You can build your own emergency kit for flooding and leaks, or purchase vendor pre-made kit like this one from University Products - http://www.universityproducts.com/cart.php?m=product_list&c=166

You can build your own emergency kit for flooding and leaks or purchase vendor pre-made kit like this one from University Products – http://www.universityproducts.com/cart.php?m=product_list&c=166

Covered display vitrines and storage shelving adds a layer of protection from leaks.

Masters of Studio Glass: Richard Meitner - 2009

Masters of Studio Glass: Richard Meitner – 2009

Pests

Pests are another risk that museums try to avoid. At MOG, we do not allow food, drinks, or potted plants in our galleries or storage areas, as these things all attract pests. We also ask that our custodial team stays on top of their housekeeping to deter vermin and insects.

Although most of the artwork at the Museum is glass (and not so tasty to pests), many pieces at the Museum include materials such as paper and wood. These are the organic materials that are easily damaged by pests.

This piece, Vanity, by Joseph Gregory Rossano is an prime example of mixed-media artwork that contains not only glass, but wood and paper that are a food source for many pests. Photo by Duncan Price.

This piece, Vanity, by Joseph Gregory Rossano is an prime example of mixed-media artwork that contains not only glass, but wood and paper that are a food source for many pests. Photo by Duncan Price.

Watch out for pests who would like to dine on the materials in your artwork!

Stay tuned for more on caring for art at MOG!

For more from the Care and Handling of Artwork series, check out:

Rebecca Engelhardt is the Registrar/Collections Manager at Museum of Glass. Her background includes ten years at MOG, plus time at major museums such as Smithsonian Institution and The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art.