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Stevens Hand Blown GlassView CartHome PageEmail Us
About The Artist
MIKE STEVENS

Mike Stevens and assistant Sarah Winkler make up the glass blowing team. 

To see us in action, click the link below:

http://www.youtube.com/embed/t9dE7FjCne0

 

Their studio, Stevens Hand Blown Glass, was founded in 2002 and was the first off-hand glass blowing studio in the state of Utah in over 20 years.

The journey began when Mike decided to follow his life-long dream to learn the art of glass blowing.  When he returned to Seattle, where he grew up, and touched the hot molten glass for the first time, he was hooked! "Wow, what an experience!" 


"I loved it!  I returned home after spending about 40 hours of blowing glass.  I was so excited that I immediately started building all of the equipment for a full tilt glass blowing studio." 

Mike is also a very talented wood and metal worker. He owns and operates Currant Creek Metals, where he built the day tank (glass furnace that holds the crucible with up to 350 Lbs of hot molten glass), glory hole, annealer, bench, and many other pieces of equipment.  Six months later the studio was hot and the crew got busy blowing glass! 


The crew are mostly self-taught but have worked with, and gained, valuable experience from other glass blowers.  Their thanks goes out to Darin Denison, who got Mike hooked on glass blowing by being the first person to work hot glass with him. 

Special thanks to John MacPherson, a retired glass blower from the early pioneer days of the glass movement in the United States.  "Thank you, John, for sharing all your years of experience and knowledge." 

Our most recent appreciation for Ed Schmid:  "Thank you Ed, for helping us to improve our skills and teaching us so many more invaluable tips and techniques.  It is such a pleasure to have you in the studio.  We are looking forward to your next visit."


 

 

Mike enjoys participating in art shows and has shown his work in the Park City Arts Festival, Utah Art Festival, Marin Arts Festival and many others.

AWARDS AND INVITED ARTIST

  • Invited Artist, Utah Arts Festival Gallery, SLC, UT January 2007
  • Featured Artist, Local Colors Artworks, SLC, UT,  May 2006
  • Invited Artist, Gallery At The Station, Ogden, UT November 2005
  • Featured Artist, Local Colors Artworks, SLC, UT Oct. 2005 
  • Purchase Award, St. George Arts Festival, St. George, UT April 2005
  • Honorable Mention, St. George Arts Festival, St. George, UT April 2005
  • Featured Artist, Local Colors Artworks, SLC, UT  Oct. 2004
  • Juror's Choice, Glass At The Garden, SLC, UT November 2004
  • Best In Show, Glass At The Garden, SLC, UT November 2004
  • Award Of Excellence, Forum and Fusion, SLC, UT June 2004
  • Featured Artist , Local Colors Artworks, SLC, UT Aug 2003

 

Making a piece

We each  take turns being the gaffer, the person blowing the piece, and being the assistant.

The passion begins with the gaffer drawing the design of their piece on the studio floor with chalk to communicate their vision to the assistant. 

The gaffer gathers hot molten glass onto a blow-pipe. "It is kind of like keeping a blob of honey on a broomstick."   Glass is kept at 2000 degrees, in a Crucible inside a glass furnace, so great care must be taken when gathering from the crucible.


The glass is then shaped and cooled using wooden blocks, the marver table (a steel plate), and wet newspaper.  The glass (on the pipe) is continually returned to the glory hole to be reheated so that it can be blown and shaped by the gaffer.




The piece is then transferred to another pipe called a punty, turning it end for end so the bottom becomes the top.

This allows the gaffer to use a tool called jacks to open the piece and shape the neck and mouth into the desired finished shape.

When the gaffer is happy with the piece, it is taken off the punty and put into the annealer to cool at the appropriate rate.

The next day when the annealer is opened it is just like Christmas morning.  "I can't wait to see how my bowl turned out."

Each piece of our art glass is then signed by the gaffer, numbered and dated and is a unique, individual piece of art glass.

The assistant helps the gaffer by opening the glory hole doors, having the appropriate tools ready at the correct time, keeping the marver table clean and putting the piece into the annealer.





   When students have the opportunity to touch the hot molten glass, it gives them a wonderful appreciation for the medium.

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