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Glass Art

“You stare mesmerized by the scene before you. A glass blower and his assistant dance with fire and a blowpipe with molten glass stuck on the end of it. You feel the blistering heat of the 2000-degree roaring furnace and see the sweat dripping off of the faces of the glass blowers.  All of a sudden the blob on the blowpipe flares into a vase. After 20 minutes of intense labor, the glass artist knocks the piece gently off of the pipe and into the waiting assistant's gloved hands. As he carefully places the vase into the annealing oven, you can't help yourself. You burst into applause! Wow, what an experience! ”

– Ann Lindsay in Inside Benicia, December 2009

Come witness first-hand the astonishing process of turning molten glass into exquisite works of art by masters who practice the old-world art form of glass blowing. The glass artists of Benicia create bowls, stemware, vases, paperweights, coasters, lamps, clock cases and other types of one-of-kind corporate awards, among other stunning collectibles.

You can see the glass art (and often the glass-blowing process) on display at any of Benicia's internationally acclaimed glass studios:

Each art glass studio is recognized for its own distinctive style of hand-blown glass. Smyers is known for its designs of functional glassware. Nourot's work is famous for its intense red color.  Lindsay produces unique paperweights and vessels.

But that's just part of the story. They all create custom lighting designs and will work with you to craft just the right piece. These are items that could easily become your next family heirloom.

Twice a year - the first weekend in May and the first week in December – the glass studios host open houses, where the public is invited to view the glass blowers at work on their special creations. But you can often just drop by the studios and catch the masters at work.

Next: Visual Arts & Crafts »

Upcoming Arts Events
16 Oct 2014 (All day) - 30 Nov 2014 (All day)
Ceramics, Benicia and the Evolution of California Funk Art

A historical exhibition celebrating Benicia's art legacy and the inception of beniciaMOA, the Benicia Musuem of Art. Transmigrational Ceramics from the Corridor honors this legacy exhibiting work by founders of the California Funk movement and its creative heirs together for the first time. Opening Reception on Saturday, October 18, 3:00-6:00 PM

5 Dec 2014 - 10:00am - 7 Dec 2014 - 5:00pm
Benicia Arsenal Artists Open Studios

See the artists in their element at the annual Benicia Arsenal Artists December Open Studios event in the studios on Jackson and Tyler Streets in the Historic Benicia Arsenal Artist Community. Studios buildings are circa 1850s-1920s and are all within walking distance. Free admission and parking.

13 Dec 2014 - 10:30am - 2:00pm
St. Nicholas & Victorian Ornaments

The Benicia State Parks Association invites you to the Capitol Building for Victorian Ornament Making (nominal fee for materials) and to the Fischer Hanlon House to visit St. Nicholas (no cost-bring your own camera). Docents in period attire will serve cookies and cider from the wood burning stove.

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