Various Artists, Spring 2014

Twelve artists stepped out of their comfort zone and into the glass studio for the 2014 Pittsburgh Biennial at Pittsburgh Glass Center,  a part of the largest survey of regional contemporary art.

The Biennial at PGC was an expanded version of PGC’s Idea Furnace, an experimental design program and residency to connect non-glass artists with glass artists and encourage exploration in other art forms. The PGC program was created in 2012 to bridge the gap between glass and other art and design media. The goal is to educate artists about glass, give them access to the material and help them advance their ideas in a new media.

Over the course of the program, PGC realized that the synergy between the glass artists and the artists unfamiliar with glass held more than just creative potential. The process of collaboration and exchange became just as important as the outcome. For this reason, PGC made Idea Furnace a six-month residency for glass and non-glass artists and in anticipation of the Biennial, PGC selected the twelve participating artists based on their creative reputation. 

“We hand-selected the artists to represent a wide variety of stages in their careers, material and type of work. We looked for artists who did not traditionally work in glass, were doing interesting work in Pittsburgh, whose work we admired and would translate interestingly into glass. They were all drawn to the new material with a fresh perspective, no rules and unlimited possibilities. It was an eye-opener for our glass artists and challenged them to think differently about the material,” said Heather McElwee, PGC Executive Director and curator of the Biennial at Pittsburgh Glass Center.

Participating artists include:

  • Robert Beckman
  • Jeremy Boyle
  • Melissa Fitzgerald
  • Jason Forck
  • Toby Fraley
  • Vanessa German
  • Ashley McFarland
  • Juliet Pusateri
  • Travis Rohrbaugh
  • Will Schlough
  • Kara Skylling
  • Margaret Spacapan

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