2007 Pittsburgh Press Release

Glass Art Society's 2007 Conference: Transformational Matter

Contact: Pamela Koss, Executive Director

For Immediate Release

Glass Art Society's 2007 Conference: Transformational Matter
to be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, June 7-9, 2007

SEATTLE, WA--Glass Art Society's (GAS) 37th Annual Conference will be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, bringing together a growing national and international community of glass artists and enthusiasts. During this year’s conference, Transformational Matter, almost 2,000 artists, glass appreciators and organizations attending the conference will be asked to think about transformation as an internal and external force. Lectures and demonstrations, technical panels and exhibitions by established and emerging artists will highlight the vibrancy of the glass community today.

 “Pittsburgh is at a point of transformation, from steel mills and glass factories to high technology and artist studios, from lost and abandoned spaces to reclamation through creative force. Not only has the city experienced a transformation, but so have its people and institutions,” said Kathleen Mulcahy, co-chair of the 2007 GAS Conference and co-founder of Pittsburgh Glass Center, a state-of-the-art glass studio that will serve as a cornerstone for this year’s conference demonstrations.

The Glass Art Society’s annual conference brings together an international community of glass enthusiasts and artists from every discipline of glass (blowing, hot casting, kiln work, stained glass, flame working, beadmaking, cold work, neon, etc). It is an opportunity for members to network in various capacities: artists connect with gallery owners and others, collectors can meet their favorite artists, technical manufacturers and suppliers show customers the latest innovations.

This year’s event is part of Pittsburgh’s yearlong citywide celebration of glass. Organizations throughout the city will feature events, performances, and exhibitions relating to glass.  For example, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens will feature Dale Chihuly’s “Gardens of Glass” exhibition and the Carnegie Museum of Art will feature an exhibition called “Venice and America: Glass Conversations 1955-2005.” Both sites will be venues for the pre-conference reception on June 6.

A selection of this year’s events

Demonstrations in flameworking, hot glass, kilnwork, neon and engraving will be presented by artists such as Alexander Arbell, Pat Bako, John de Wit, Jiyong Lee, Dante Marioni, Davide Salvadore, Layla Walter and Thomas Wendler.

Lectures will be given by artists including Warren Carther: Innovation and Transformation in Architecture, Public Art and Architectural Glass; and Therman Statom: State of the Art of African American Glass ArtistsMichael Greenman will deliver the Labino Lecture, Glass Art & Science, Moving Forward Together; and Maria Porges will give the Strattman Lecture on critical issues, Writing About Glass: Hot Air about Hot (and Cold) Stuff.

Panel discussions will include Implications of Transforming the Figure into Glass, with Lucy Lyon, Hank Murta Adams, Judy Hill, Clifford Rainey and Tina Oldknow; Community Resurgence: Making Sense of Place, with Kathleen Mulcahy, Ron Desmett, Deborah Hosking and Randy Kovitz, among others.

The Educational Resource Center will be held at the Omni William Penn Hotel, Oakmont Room, and will provide a space for attendees to gather materials and information on glass educational facilities. Technical Display will be held in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Hall A throughout the conference and will provide attendees the opportunity to stroll through a marketplace of glass-related goods and services.

GAS Annual Auction will showcase glass art spanning from signature one-of-a-kind pieces to collaborative work in a variety of price ranges. Proceeds help support the educational efforts of the Glass Art Society. The auction is open to the public and will be held at the Omni William Penn Hotel on June 9. Preview will be held on June 8.

The Goblet Grab, an event where attendees can spontaneously grab and purchase drinking vessels, will be held on June 8. Portions of this fundraiser's proceeds go to the Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF).

International Student Exhibition will feature glass art by GAS student members who are enrolled full-time in degree-seeking programs. The exhibition will be open to the public and will be held at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Concourse A, on June 8-9. 

Two annual awards will be presented: the Lifetime Achievement Award will go to Jiri Harcuba, Master Engraver, Artist and Teacher; and the Honorary Lifetime Membership Award will be presented to to Michael Rogers, Artist, Past GAS President, RIT Professor.

Pre-Conference Tours on June 5 will include a tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob; a Collector’s Tour: Art & Architecture; a Walking Architectural Tour of Downtown Pittsburgh; and an Industrial Glass Tour of Pittsburgh-area glass factories.

Exhibitions, Events, and Workshops will be held throughout Pittsburgh, offering participants an abundance of glass-related experiences. The Gallery Hop will escort art-lovers on an eclectic tour of some of Pittsburgh’s finest galleries.

The Closing Night Party will conclude the conference with great music, food and spirits at the unique Sports Rock Cafe. 

Student scholarships are available to full-time student GAS members to assist in attending the conference. Register by April 2 for the lowest conference fee; brochures with conference details and a registration form are now available at the GAS office, or on the GAS website at www.glassart.org.

“People will be amazed when they come to Pittsburgh, at the beauty and the cultural richness of the city. A perfect backdrop for a conference that will highlight how this city has helped to transform glass as an industry and an art,” said Pamela Koss, GAS Executive Director.

For more information about the 2007 GAS Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, contact: Glass Art Society, 3131 Western Ave., Ste 414, Seattle, WA 98121, Tel: 206.382.1305 Fax: 206.382.2630, , www.glassart.org

The Glass Art Society is a professional organization whose purpose is to encourage excellence, to advance education, to promote the appreciation and development of the glass arts, and to support the worldwide community of artists who work with glass.

The Glass Art Society reserves the right to deny applications for Technical Display, advertising participation, GAS membership or the conference from anyone for any reason.