August 15-16, Frauenau (and Zwiesel)

The manager at the hotel explained a different, less dangerous route to the train station.

Zwiesel is a 15-minute train ride from Frauenau, my real destination. It turns out that hotels have visitor cards, which means I can ride the train and buses in the area for free. It also includes admission to some museums, etc. — except I always forget about the card for them.

 

Before I go to the museum, I wander around Frauenau a little, visiting a couple of stores that sell glass. This is a religious holiday in Bavaria, so many of the stores are closed. The bus I was expecting also didn’t run.

My first stop is the Glass Museum in Frauenau. It’s a good-sized (relative to the other three museums I’ve seen on this trip) museum, glass walls, glass staircase. It’s on two floors, includes a café, is located in a park with a pond and many glass sculptures. It’s next to the Eisch facility (gallery / sales shop / glass-blowing facility).

Glasmuseum Frauenau

Ron Fischer, "Arche II", in the Glass Garden

Ron Fischer, “Arche II”, in the Glass Garden

Mosaic in the floor near the entrance of the museum

Mosaic in the floor near the entrance of the museum

The museum offers a well-done history of glass, with apparently a lot of original pieces. It also offers an overview of glass in the area, which is on the border to what is now the Czech Republic. This area has had glass since the 1600s — the Poschinger Glass facility is still in business. The glass place I visited on my first trip to Germany in 1969 has disappeared, but it must have been in Zwiesel, because of its name (Arber –and many businesses have Arber in their names).

I wander through the Glass Garden, which leads in part to the Eisch sales area.

The sales part of Eisch is open, so I wander through that, as well. Eisch was begun in the mid-1940s, after the war. Best known is the son, Erwin Eisch, now in his 90s. He, along with Harvey Littleton, was a mover and shaker in the modern studio art glass movement. He was also one of the founders of the glass museum.

On Thursday I visit Poschinger, complete with a tour. This is apparently the largest manufacturer in the area, as well as the oldest. It has a retail outlet, but apparently most of its production is fulfilling orders by other companies. The tour was interesting. One of the other participants was a woman whose father was American. The other part of the group is a couple with their daughter. It turns out the woman is a well-known Bavarian moderator/actress — I didn’t know who she was, but the other woman recognized her.

Back in Zwiesel I set out to explore and find the exhibit at the middle school. This is glass, ceramics, paintings, wood, metal… on three floors. With lots of windows, it’s great for glass. Included in the exhibit are some pieces that were winners in a competition at the glass school. Most of the pieces are by women and represent a variety of techniques.

I was actually looking for the huge church. Finding the middle school was luck. Tomorrow I’ll visit the exhibit by the church.

more photos to come

 

Advertisements

August 5, Ebeltoft and around Aarhus

After a quick (and expensive) breakfast at the hotel, I took myself to the bus station to catch Bus 123 to Ebeltoft. The clerk at the hotel the previous evening gave me a map and showed me where the station was. For 160 dkk (just under $25) round trip, I take off. The bus driver, not the youngest, understands me and speaks limited English.

Once in Ebeltoft, it’s a bit of a hike to the Glasmuseet. I’m there a few minutes early — it’s been so hot up to now. Today it’s rather cold and windy, a drop from the 90s to around 70 with a windchill factor. And I sent my down jacket home…Draw

The museum is pretty nice. The young woman at the reception desk speaks a few words of English. The exhibit has a flyer in Danish, in German and in English, so I’m OK on that. I wander through, taking lots of photos. The exhibit is modern Scandinavian glass artists, mostly glass blowers. It’s an interesting exhibit, including a short film by one and several light and sound pieces. On the top floor is more educational info and things for children to do with glass.

Outside is a separate building where the glass blowers work. Today a young man and woman are the team — it turns out they’re French. The man spent time at Cerfav in Vannes-le-Chatel (where I was in 2015 to visit) and worked at Baccarat (where Jacqueline took me two weeks ago). Small world. I talked to him in a break, but he wasn’t too impressed.

The good thing here is that people were coming to the museum. Several had quite young children (as in high chairs necessary), but at least they’re out and visiting (in Claret, Jacqueline and I were the only people in the museum; in Carmaux I was joined by a family with three children).

The museum has a little restaurant, very modern and nice. The menu was in Danish and Danish, so I told the young waitress that I was a vegetarian, no fish or meat. She pointed me to a potato and cheese dish that she said was typically Danish (as were all the dishes on the menu). I could pick out words here and there from German — in this case Kartoffel… I just wasn’t sure what went with the potatoes.

Lunch at the Glass Museum in Ebeltoft

Lunch at the Glass Museum in Ebeltoft

It started as a slice of bread, covered with sliced boiled potatoes and a soft cheese, with radishes, tomatoes, carrots, onions, a couple of asparagus spears and lots of various greens. It was quite good — just a surprise.

I had been there for about three hours and that was enough, so I set out to find the bus stop. I decided to take a different route and see if I could manage not to get too lost. In the process, I found the heart of Ebeltoft, which is quite old and quite picturesque.

A lot of little cafes were open, along with a fair number of stores. I didn’t see a lot of glass, though what I did see seemed to be a lot of the same artists as the museum gift shop offered.

Eventually, I did find the bus stop, no thanks to my phone, which was going to send me to Thailand (I asked for Bus 123 stops…apparently that’s a big deal there).

On the way back, a whole group of teenagers — maybe 25 — got on the bus with their camping backpacks. It was full, full, full.

Back in Aarhus, I wandered back to the hotel, noticing a giant church (the Aarhus Cathedral) in the area. After dropping my stuff, I set out to look around. I could not have picked a better location for a hotel. It’s around the corner from the Aarhus Theater, close to the pedestrian shopping area, around the corner from 7-11, McDonalds and Starbucks (my grande latte here would cost about $7.50, instead of $4.80). I wandered through Magazin, a large, upscale department store that’s open every day from 10 to 8 (10 to 20). Depressing to see how much clothes cost… These included Hugo Boss, DKNY, Tommy Hilfiger and a few other brands I’ve heard of and several that were unfamiliar.

Just a note: I keep hearing that everyone in Europe speaks English, especially the young people. I have not found that to be the case. I did get a brownie and a roll at a bakery in the  department store, and the young guy there did quite well. Otherwise, it seems that in out-of-the-way places like Ebeltoft, English is less common, though I did hear quite a bit from visitors.

Tomorrow it’s back to Germany and a few days in Leipzig.

more photos to come

May 4, 2018, New York

Friday I went into Manhattan. Thanks to the young guy at the front desk — who was still on duty the next day, I headed for the High Line, a park/walkway where a railroad used to run. It’s also near Chelsea, where a friend told me I’d find lots of art galleries.

After a couple of queries, I was directed to the Heller Gallery, which had phenomenal glass pieces. I was allowed to take photos, though I can’t say my little camera / phone did particularly well with the lighting. Here are a few:

Josepha Gasch-Muche

Josepha Gasch-Muche. slightly different — not thin slices of clear glass

A different Lino Tagliapietra - fused, not blown

A different Lino Tagliapietra – fused, not blown

 

 

 

Steffen Dam, The Secret Life of Plants

Steffen Dam, The Secret Life of Plants

Amber Cowan

Amber Cowan

I checked out a few other places, then headed back to Penn Station and Hicksville.

In the late afternoon John arrived by car from his new home in Massachusetts. He called Hank Neimark, and we all met for dinner on the pleasant patio of Hendrick’s Tavern in Roslyn. I hadn’t seen Hank since maybe 1978 or 1979 (at a WCWP reunion I organized with Stewart Ain, another station member). I didn’t know him well, so I was happy he remembered me.

 

January 2018, Indio, California

For a while I’d been wanting to take a workshop with Paul Messink, who does multilayers of glass to get a lot of dimension (www.paulmessink.com). Paul is now based in Indio, California, which is about a five-hour drive from Tucson. I finally had enough money and the time to take his workshop in Indio, the closest place and his home studio.

It turned out, though I contacted him late, that he had space. In fact, we were only two in the workshop. I mentioned at Cactus Wren Artisans that I was going. Sharon, formerly my framer and now working in painting on glass and other artistic pursuits, mentioned a friend nearby was getting ready to move. She really wanted to see him and his wife before they left. As it turned out, the week of my workshop was the last weekend they would be there. So, Sharon decided to go along to see them.

Paul mentioned beforehand a glass exhibit at the Palm Springs Art Museum. This is a little more than a half hour from Indio. I really wanted to see the exhibit and knew that once the workshop began, I wouldn’t have time. So I got Sharon to hustle and we left early, so we’d have time on Monday after we arrived to get to the museum.

The exhibit was only women artists working in glass. These included some big names and some really interesting pieces:

Debra Moore, Orchid in Vase

Debra Moore, Orchid in Vase

Ginny Ruffner, Pastich-ing Pablo

Ginny Ruffner, Pastich-ing Pablo

Anja Isphording

Anja Isphording

Karen LaMonte, cast glass

Karen LaMonte, cast glass

Detail from Karen LaMonte's cast glass dress

Detail from Karen LaMonte’s cast glass dress

Lucy Lyon, Personal Space from one side

Lucy Lyon, Personal Space from one side

Lucy Lyon, Personal Space, another view

Lucy Lyon, Personal Space, another view

Mary Van Cline, The Voyage Along the Curve of Time

Mary Van Cline, The Voyage Along the Curve of Time, a large and very different piece

Nancy Callan, Plum Eddy Droplet

Nancy Callan, Plum Eddy Droplet

There were more, but these were the ones that photographed the best and that I liked the most. This was part 1. Part 2 will come around June.

Meantime, we had full days of workshop Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and a half-day Friday.

My pieces turned out OK — Jackie, the other student’s — were, of course, nicer. She was great to work with, and Paul was an excellent instructor. We used enamels on multiple layers of glass, first fired at a low temperature individually, then put together and fired with dams.

My final project in pieces

My final project in pieces

Finished trees, based on a photo by Jan Mayer, member of the Tucson Mountains Artist Collective.

Finished trees, based on a photo by Jan Mayer, member of the Tucson Mountains Artist Collective. I liked the photo better….

Sunset piece, based on a photo by Mary Ann, in my French conversation group.

Sunset piece, based on a photo by Mary Ann, in my French conversation group. I got a lot of glare in the photo, but I liked the way the piece turned out.

We started back as soon as the workshop was finished and spent the night in Gila Bend, Arizona. We had a spectacular sunset:

Sunset near Gila Bend, Arizona

Sunset near Gila Bend, Arizona

Sharon knew of a restaurant there — with a space motif. Who would have thought, in the middle of Nowhere, Arizona, and it had Phoenix prices for the motel, so we stayed elsewhere. We enjoyed dinner at the Space Age Restaurant, however.

Space Age Restaurant, with the Best Western motel in Gila Bend, AZ

Space Age Restaurant, with the Best Western motel in Gila Bend, AZ

Thursday, May 18, 2017, Crossing the waters to Victoria / Butchart Gardens

SPOILER ALERT: Not interested in flowers? Skip this post… it’s going to have lots of flower photos….

The first challenge was getting out of the parking garage, which proved far easier than getting into it and parked.

This seemed really tight to me...

This seemed really tight to me…

We’re off on an adventure: taking the ferry (with the rental car) from Vancouver to Victoria, going to Butchart Gardens, and sailing onward from Victoria to Port Angeles, Washinton, Friday.

Using Google Maps on my iPhone we had a terrific tour of San Francisco and traffic congestion on the way to catch the ferry at Tsawassen, apparently close a First Nations facility. BC Ferries did a great job of getting the 200+ cars loaded (and unloaded) quickly. Note to self: these types of trips are best reserved in advance, not the same day.

View from the ferry, crossing from Vancouver to Vancouver Island

View from the ferry, crossing from Vancouver to Vancouver Island

Islands and boat through the window of the ferry to Victoria

Islands and boat through the window of the ferry to Victoria

We decided to spring for the CAD 12.00 a person and ride in luxury in the more private area. It was a great deal: quite, more comfortable seats, and all the coffee or tea and breakfast you wanted to eat.

Comfort area on the ferry to Victoria

Comfort area on the ferry to Victoria

The 1.5-hour ferry trip left us in Port Swartz. Thanks to my phone, we found Butchart Gardens, though signs seemed to be lacking. Also, it wasn’t on the map, though it’s a very major attraction. We’re still trying to figure that one out.

Flowers at Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island

Flowers at Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island

More painted daisies

More painted daisies

More purple flowers

More purple flowers

More painted daisies at Butchart Gardens

More painted daisies at Butchart Gardens

Painted daisies at Butchart Gardens

Painted daisies at Butchart Gardens

You may have guessed I like purple, and I went a little crazy with the photos of the purple flowers.

I’ve grouped the photos — the garden is huge, and this “tour” is in no particular order.

There’s a view of boats and water from the gardens:

Butchart Cove Lookout

Butchart Cove Lookout

Butchart Cove Lookout, without the trees

Butchart Cove Lookout, without the trees

Now for more flowers. I was fascinated by the variety of tulips.

Red/yellow tulip with yellow fringe

Red/yellow tulip with yellow fringe or spikes

Yellow tulip with red highlights

Yellow tulip with red highlights

Several purple tulips with little yellow spots.

Several purple tulips with little yellow spots. They all seemed that way, so I don’t think it was a disease….

Tulips in several shades

Tulips in several shades

Red tulips with fringed white edges

Red tulips with fringed white edges

Funky yellow tulips

Funky yellow tulips

Pink tulips

Pink tulips

Actually, there were lots of other flowers in bloom, too:

Narcissus

Narcissus

Canada is celebrating 150 years

Canada is celebrating 150 years

 

Interesting yellow flower

Interesting yellow flower

These leaves sprout flowers

These leaves sprout flowers

Lilacs

Lilacs

 Lilacs of another color

Lilacs of another color – I’d never seen this color before….

I've seen these before in orange.

I’ve seen these before in orange.

Most flowers that are blue aren’t really, really blue. But this one is:

Again, the rhododendrons were huge…

White rhododendron, among the largest I've ever seen

White rhododendron, among the largest I’ve ever seen

And had some colors I didn’t recall seeing:

Purple and white rhododendron

Purple and white rhododendron

Yellow rhododendron

Yellow rhododendron

Here and there we found glass:

Stained glass sign for ice cream at Butchart Gardens

Stained glass sign for ice cream at Butchart Gardens

Gorgeous fused glass piece in the artisan shop at Butchart Gardens

Gorgeous fused glass piece in the artisan shop at Butchart Gardens

Glass flowers, ones you can take home

Glass flowers, ones you can take home

And more flowers, with fountains:

Waterfall with flowers at Butchart Gardens

Waterfall with flowers at Butchart Gardens

Frog fountain

Frog fountain

Changing fountain

Changing fountain

Fish fountain

Fish fountain

Dragon Fountain

Dragon FountainLots of trees:

Trees in the garden

Trees in the garden

An interesting tree in Butchart Gardens

An interesting tree in Butchart Gardens

Up close , maybe a Japanese maple?

Up close , maybe a Japanese maple?

Sunken Garden at Butchart Gardens

Sunken Garden at Butchart Gardens

The merry-go-round cost a couple of dollars extra and had lots of less-than-traditional critters, such as this cat with a fish in its mouth.

Merry-go-round

Merry-go-round

Outside is a bronze merry-go-round horse, “Annabelle”:

Bronze merry-go-round horse, Annabelle

Bronze merry-go-round horse, Annabelle

And there’s a boar:

Bronze boar in the gardens

Bronze boar in the gardens

We can’t forget the totem poles. The gardens offers more, but here are two that lent themselves to photos:

Totem pole in the gardens

Totem pole in the gardens

Another totem pole

Another totem pole

And as we leave, some more of the painted daisies:

Painted daisies...more purple!

Painted daisies…more purple!

After about two hours of wandering the garden, snapping about 200 photos and having a gelato cone, we headed for the hotel.

Our stay in Victoria will be in the following post, though it’s the same day.

 

Tucson, Arizona, June 12, 2016

June 16 was a big day for a lot of people. Nancy Elliott, owner of Katy’s Cache at Monterey Court / super seamstress and designer / singer and guitarist, put on her first fashion show.

Nancy Elliott, with beaded necklace by Gale Thomssen of Cactus Wren Artisans Too

Nancy Elliott, with wonderful beaded necklace by Gale Thomssen of Cactus Wren Artisans Too

Nancy had five models: Andra, Bobbi Jeen (the most famous of the group), Cory, Martha and Sherry. With Nancy’s creations they wore jewelry from Cactus Wren Artisans, creations by Gale Thomssen, Emily Hall, Pam Conner and me. Since this is my blog, I’ll just show my work (except for the photo of Nancy, with Gale’s wonderful beaded piece). The models were super; I found, though, that fashion photography is not my calling. For the sake of simplicity, I’m going to show the models alphabetically.

Nancy talked about doing another fashion show in the fall. To find out more, sign up for the Monterey Court newsletter at montereycourtaz.com.

Andra in red pendant

Here’s Andra in a red pendant on red cord. I’d pretty much given up on this piece, but it worked wonderfully with this dress of Nancy’s.

Andra in aqua vertical necklace

Andra selected a 3-piece vertical necklace in aqua (I would call it “teal”, producer CBS calls it “aqua”) for this bright piece by Nancy.

Andra in iridized white pyramid pendant + earrings

For this mainly-red-and-white dress, Andra picked the iridized white version of my upside down pyramid pendant on a gold wire, with matching earrings.

Andra in purple pyramid

Andra wears the purple dichroic version, which goes well with this dress.

Bobbi Jeen in gold pyramid plus earrings

Bobbi Jeen, the real professional of the models, selected the gold version of the upside down pyramid pendant and earrings for this outfit. The dichroic glass started out “salmon”, but for some reason fired gold.

Bobbi Jeen in 5-piece red glass necklace and earrings

For this blouse, Bobbi Jeen picked the 5-piece red necklace with matching earrings. My camera and I weren’t fast enough to get really good shots of her.

Corey in green pendant

Cory, Nancy’s daughter, found a multi-hued green pendant on a copper neckwire to go with this purple dress with sheer, multicolored covering.

Corey, same pendant, different outfit.

Cory, same pendant, different outfit.

This shot of Cory, in a red/yellow/lime green pendant, was done by professional photographer Robert Block.

This shot of Cory, in a red/yellow/ lime green pendant, was done by professional photographer Robert Block.

Martha in magenta pyramid necklace

Moving on to Martha, who picked the magenta version of the upside down pyramid pendant. I could have gotten a better angle….

Martha in beige earrings with salmon dichro

Martha matched one of  Gale Thomssen’s beaded necklaces with my beige + salmon dichroic clip earrings.

Martha in multi-barrette

Martha pulled her long hair back in one of my black barrettes with multi-colored dichroic glass highlights.

Sherrie in 5 pc red necklace w matching earrings

A serious Sherry picked the 5-piece red necklace with matching hanging earrings to highlight this blue-and-white dress.

Sherrie in 5-pc red necklace

And again for this outfit… I’ve heard that red jewelry is difficult to find.

Sherrie in lime green

This time Sherry picked a lime green / yellow pendant and hanging earrings.

herry in 5-pc multi necklace w earrings

To add a little pizzazz to the white blouse, Sherry selected a 5-piece black necklace with multi-colored dichroic centers and matching earrings.

Coburg, Germany, October 14, 2015

The hotel is right on the market place, and this morning was the market.

The Marktplatz in Coburg

The Marktplatz in Coburg

Painted pumpkins in the Marktplatz, Coburg

Painted pumpkins in the Marktplatz, Coburg

The Marktplatz in Coburg

The Marktplatz in Coburg

 

One of the oldest pharmacies, on the Marktplatz in Coburg

One of the oldest pharmacies, on the Marktplatz in Coburg

This morning we looked around Coburg a little, then went on a walking tour of the old part of town. I found a glass studio that seemed to make fused glass windows plus Vero Vetro, a nice stained glass studio with some really nice fused bowls, as well. We chatted with the owner/artist for a few minutes. Kaisu ended up buying some intersting painted globs.

Stadt Theater in Coburg

Stadt Theater in Coburg

After cake and coffee, we set off by taxi to the Vesta, the fortress on the hill with a selection of Venetian and Venetian-like glass, as well as some more modern pieces. we spent about three hours,with glass and a variety of other exhibits in the buildings that pre-date the US….

Near the Vesta

Near the Vesta

Henkelschale, 2nd half of the 17th century at the Vesta

Henkelschale, 2nd half of the 17th century at the Vesta

Venetian chandelier at the Vesta

Venetian chandelier at the Vesta

 Bowl by Daum, from around 1920, at the Vesta

Bowl by Daum, from around 1920, at the Vesta

Galle, Vase w anemones, around 1900, in the Vesta

Galle, Vase w anemones, around 1900, in the Vesta

Tiffany, bowl, around 1900, in the Vesta

Tiffany, bowl, around 1900, in the Vesta

Vase by Witwe / Peche, around 1920, in the Vesta

Vase by Witwe / Peche, around 1920, in the Vesta

 

Lots of Glass in Northern New Mexico – Taos

During April and May I received several emails from Blue Rain Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, announcing an invitational glass show opening on June 5, 2015. Curator for the show is Preston Singletary, who shows at the gallery and whose work is very unique: blown glass and then carved, with Pacific Northwest themes. Of course, I had to go.

I left Wednesday, June 3, and spent the night in Las Cruces with friends. Bonnie is a super ceramics artist who makes her own tiles and then assembles them into mosaics. Her husband, Wall, is working on collages and assemblages these days, often with social statements. Thursday I went on to Santa Fe via Cedar Crest (where I renewed a friendship from 40 years ago with Denise) and Madrid, a mining town turned ghost town turned artist colony. The beauty of Santa Fe is my friend Judy, whom I met through an environmental group in the mid-1970s. I stay with her, so Santa Fe is affordable.

Friday I took off first to check out Taos, which I hadn’t seen for at least 40 years. I wanted to check out a gallery whose calls to artists sound interesting. In walking around on Kit Carson Road, I found the Copper Moon Gallery and a glass event whose call to artists by the Taos Institute for Glass Arts (TIGA) last year I missed. The gallery has some blown glass pieces by Tony Jojola (from the Heard Museum show in Phoenix) and fused pieces by Michelle Rial, who is also a member of the National Capital Art Glass Guild, along with some unique cast pieces by other artists. The gallery owner was very nice, but I didn’t think to ask to take photos. After a long conversation, she sent me to the David Anthony Fine Art / DAFA gallery, where she said I’d find a lot more glass.

DAFA / David Anthony Fine Art. 132 Kit Carson Road, is a relatively large gallery with some wonderful furniture and, thanks to this TIGA event, lots of glass. The gallery seems to represent a couple of glass artists, but had several more. Here are some shots:

Hiroshi Yamano,Japan, blown glass

Hiroshi Yamano, Japan, blown glass

Lachezar Dochev, Bulgaria, Urban Sites of Dreamland, kilncast

Lachezar Dochev, Bulgaria, Urban Sites of Dreamland, kilncast

David Helm - USA - Expression One

David Helm, USA, Expression One, cold worked and bonded

Sini Majuri, Finland, Tulilintu, blown glass

Sini Majuri, Finland, Tulilintu, blown glass

Peter Wright, USA, Blown Glass Battuto Jar 2 with furniture by David Mapes

Peter Wright, USA, Blown Glass Battuto Jar 2. Note the furniture by David Mapes in the background.

Linda Ethier, USA, If I Let You Out, cast/pate de verre/found object

Linda Ethier, USA, If I Let You Out, cast/pate de verre/found object

Herb Babcock, USA, Cool High Plane, cast glass/steel/stone

Herb Babcock, USA, Cool High Plane, cast glass/steel/stone

Jane Bruce, USA, Ribbon Blocks, kilnformed and cold-worked

Jane Bruce, USA, Ribbon Blocks, kilnformed and cold-worked

Gerry Newcomb, USA, Blue Spire, cast glass and steel

Gerry Newcomb, USA, Blue Spire, cast glass and steel

This artist appears to be a regular and not part of the TIGA event:

Marty Kremer, detail from Large Bowl, black with insets

Marty Kremer, detail from Large Bowl, black with insets

Seichamps / Vannes-le-Châtel, January 20, 2015

To catch up from last night, here’s a photo of Jacqueline taken at the meeting last night. At the end we had cider and galette, the special pastry for mid-January. Jacqueline did a really good job of running the meeting.

Jacqueline talks with supporters talk finishing refreshments

Jacqueline talks with supporters after finishing refreshments

This morning the world was pretty white, from snow and frost.

View from Jacqueline's kitchen, complete with white trees

View from Jacqueline’s kitchen, complete with white trees

View from Jacqueline's kitchen window. In the distance you see the small town of Seichamps

View from Jacqueline’s kitchen window. In the distance you see the small town of Seichamps.

After making the dough for tonight’s crèpes and some specialty with mirabelle liqueuer, we set off for Vannes-le-Châtel and the Maison des Arts Verriers. This is aimed at research and glass blowing, but the shop has a lot of fused pieces. Jacqueline called in advance to find the director and arrange a possible meeting. I took along some of the pieces I’d brought (and will leave with Jacqueline). By chance the regional person for the arts was there, as well, so I had two people looking at the wall pieces I’d brought. The director said it’s difficult to do demonstrations of fusing, fusing isn’t that well known in France, and those who know it think it’s a hobby thing and not something really professional…. At any rate, I left my card.

This group has quite a nice shop and some displays by glass blowers. The shop, the director explained, is trying to develop affordable glass pieces (plates, etc.) to compete with the likes of Ikea, so people buy local artists instead of “made in China” at the local store.

Fused glass sign at the Maison des Arts Verriers in Vannes-le-Châtel.

Fused glass sign at the Maison des Arts Verriers in Vannes-le-Châtel.

We stopped at another huge shopping center on the way home, where we each bought a long-sleeved top on sale. Then on home and dinner of crèpes with mirabelles (sort of a cross between cherries and plums, a local specialty).

Tomorrow I catch a TGV from TGV Lorraine, in the middle of nowhere, changing once and arriving at the airport for my 1:55 flight home. It appears to be on Air France, not Delta, which will be another experience. I haven’t flown AF for a number of years. I’ll be curious to see if there’s more security. The French keep finding more people who may have been involved in the attacks on “Charlie Hebdo” and others.

Seichamps, January 18, 2015

At breakfast Jacqueline gave me the local newspaper with an article about the exhibit that included a short blurb about Dyane Taylor. I guess that’s better than being Diane Tucson….

Today was day 2 of the Exposition of artists from Seichamps (and elsewhere), with hours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

I’ve been pleased with my exhibit, largely because Jacqueline has provided some strong guidance. I have my laptop, with a little fan under it to keep it cool, and I’ve run a slide show of a bunch of my pieces. Some people actually stood and watched it for a minute or two. Others remarked on some of the enlarged photos, especially the one of the bowl with the apricot that’s also on the website. It helps to have professional guidance (a professional photographer in one of my groups was kind enough to pass along a few tips last year).

Stand, with mannequin and laptop, Sunday

Stand, with mannequin and laptop, Sunday

The morning was slow; the whole group moved to a different room for lunch. This took a little longer than I expected — an hour and a half. I went out after an hour to see what was happening and found two or three people looking and NO artists or others around. But nothing seemed to disappear.

Friday Jacqueline introduced me to Renée, a woman at the framing and cartonnage exhibit across from me. We’re now fast friends. She took me under her wing, directed people over to me, explaining I was from Arizona and generally helping me. Today she saved me a place at lunch, so I was with her group, which was nice. The man next to me spoke some German and some English, Renée was on the other side. The man across from me was quite nice — everyone was kind about repeating or explaining when necessary.

About 3:30 what appeared to be all of Seichamps began showing up. This continued through 5. The people who stopped to talk were quite nice and patient with my slow French. I got good at explaining, “it’s not enamel, it’s glass, fired in a kiln at 700 to 800 degrees (Celsius)”.

Sunday afternoon we had a sudden surge of visitors.

Sunday afternoon we had a sudden surge of visitors.

Many people seemed familiar with cloisonné, enamel on copper. Some seemed to know fusing, many seemed unfamiliar with it. I’m not sure what that means (recalling that some folks on Kinney Road in Tucson were unfamiliar with it, yet every other person in Tucson fused glass, or so it seems).

Jacqueline and André helped me get my stuff together, and that was it. I’ll stay in touch with Renée, who will be taking a tour of the western US with her husband in October, and maybe with a painter who talked to me quite a bit. When I thanked the organizer, she said maybe I could come back next year, so I guess my work and I were fit in OK.

As I write this, I have the company of Iso (pronounced “ee-zo”), André’s hunting companion. I asked about his name; André worked with ISO standards for highways and confirmed that’s where the name came from. The dog is part Spaniel and pointer (according to the dictionary).

Iso, André's hunting companion, keeping me company

Iso, André’s hunting companion, keeping me company