Tell us about yourself!
Most people know me as “Quade” and don’t even know my first name. I stumbled upon glass in 2000 at the Cleveland Institute of Art through a community college where I took ceramic classes. The next semester I transferred to CIA, where I earned my BFA and haven’t touched ceramics since.
I have been extremely lucky that this glass bug I caught has taken me all over the world. My journeys range from a fellowship in Holland, living/working in Seattle, a few years blowing glass on a cruise ship, spending time at Pilchuck, Haystack, Penland, and many more places to recently earning my MFA at Alfred University.
What draws you to the material you work with?
I’m attracted to everything about glass, the intense heat, the luscious light and the endless possibilities it has. However, I think the main aspect I love about glass is the challenge of controlling and manipulating it.
Most of my work focuses on the creative process rather than the creative product; it is playful, experimental, entertaining, and clever. I love the challenge of exploiting glass and its material properties, achieving qualities one would never expect.
Whether it’s making glass seem to bend and twist or capturing the dramatic states of matter it morphs though, watching molten glass change from a dancing glowing state into a cold, hard and fragile material is something I never get sick of.
What themes do you pursue in your work?
My work is ever changing nonetheless most of my work involves, line, pattern, geometric forms, and balanced shapes. My work appears sleek, simple and elegant, yet the processes to make them are usually challenging, clever and fun, as is my attraction to creating work.
What is your dream project?
There are so many in my mind. Although right now the wildest, most complicated one would be acquiring the longest piece of tempered sheet glass possible and bending it with numerous ratchet straps. Exploring the possibility of bending the sheet glass back onto itself creating a spiral or full circle before it explodes into a million pieces.
If you weren't working in this field, what career would you choose?
If creating glass wasn’t an option anymore, I think I would go back to ceramics. If art in general wasn’t an option, I see myself transplanting coral fragments to help rebuild damaged coral reefs.
Why are you a member of GAS?
The Glass Art Society has allowed me to encounter and develop friendships with numerous people in this growing glass community. Over the years, these connections have led me to wonderful glass opportunities, adventures, and projects. With each GAS conference, I get to refresh, reconnect and bridge new connections I’ve acquired along this great glass journey. Without GAS this voyage would not be as exciting.
Visit Leana Quade's GAS member profile here.