Artist in Residence Hiroshi Yamano at work in the Greenfield Village Glass Shop.
Art in action. It’s one thing to admire a sculpture made of glass through the display case, studying the technique and artistry from afar. How do you take such art appreciation to the next level? Put it into action?
That’s the question Charles Sable, curator of decorative arts, and Joshua Wojick, master glassblower at the Greenfield Village Glass Shop, pondered as they thought about what’s next for The Henry Ford’s studio glass collection.
“We wanted to broaden our involvement with studio glass,” said Sable, the curator behind of The Henry Ford’s two new glass galleries, which feature studio glass. “We didn’t want the collection to become static. We wanted to express our commitment to studio glass, and glass in general, in ways that would keep our visitors engaged long into the future.”
Added Wojick, “We wanted to continue to build on the studio glass collection, build on its connection to The Henry Ford and create more of a story — our own story — that would be integrated into each object.”
That story’s next chapter comes in the form of an artist-in-residence program. This spring and summer, the Glass Shop hosts a quartet of renowned glass artists, as talented as they are different in their approaches. The program is a first of its kind for the Glass Shop.
In May, Japanese glass artist Hiroshi Yamano kick-started the program, spending five days in the Glass Shop working with The Henry Ford’s artisans and giving visitors a close-up view of his creative process. Formally trained sculptor and glass artist Herb Babcock will also take up temporary residence in the village, along with Marc Petrovic (several of his pieces are part of The Henry Ford’s Bachmann studio glass collection) and technical glassblower Janusz Pozniak.
“We wanted artists that were willing to share their individual artistic process with the public at large,” said Wojick. “Within our shop, we show the public mostly early American glass. This program opens up our studio for the first time, really giving us a chance to show visitors how contemporary artists work, implement designs, collaborate and meld concepts into the physical.”
The pièce de résistance of the program — each artist will leave behind a one-ofa-kind finished piece that will undoubtedly add to the evolving story of The Henry Ford’s glass collection.
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Special Exhibits at The Henry Ford
Take a look at some of our resource roundups for past exhibits and special events at The Henry Ford: