GGW "e" Vignettes   •   Vol. XV, No. 3   •   September  2008 
 
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Founded in 1979, the glass art studio of Gong Glass Works is directed by artist Nancy Gong. Gong Glass Works specializes in the design and fabrication of glass art work including leaded, etched, carved, chipped and painted glass. GGW is also the distributor for UltraGlas Inc. The primary focus is on site-specific installations, embracing fine art, decorative art, architectural ornamentation, signage and graphics. GGW designs for residential, commercial and institutional applications with emphasis on customer satisfaction; sensitive, responsive and enduring designs and quality craftsmanship.

Working here in the quiet of the studio, I listen to nature and to music. I get so excited about the various projects I work on. I have to tell someone! They're all different. Nothing is ever the same. The people are different. The spaces are different. The functional and aesthetic needs are different. The inspiration is different. I am thrilled to be able to share my work with you via this newsletter! Please, pass it on!
 
Recent Work: Psychology of Nature in Art Glass
 
• Waterside Living Inside and Out / The Artistic Process / Divider Screen Details
• Just for Fun, Win an Art Glass Blessing
• Nancy Gong & Paul Knoblauch Collaborate / The Look of an Aquarium
• Solutions Studio & Spa's Retreat to Renew / Scintillating, Not Overwhelming
• Canandaigua Lake Etching in Black & White
• New Mini Blessings Scrolls
• Phoenix Red, New Color for Art Glass Blessings!
• Thoughts to share
 
Waterside Living Inside and Out
Glass, marble and granite blend with the nature in a steam shower.
Glass, marble and granite blend with the nature in a steam shower.

Perched high overlooking the water is a walk in steam shower with a large window. The view is fabulous. What a great way to start the day. Inside the Baron residence Ayse Lewis, Ayse Lewis Interiors was faced with how to treat the windows. The solution was easy. Contact Nancy Gong, she'll know what to do. Ayse's concept: "To look out the window to see the lake and to have privacy. To blend the glass waterfall and sea glass with nature as you look at the trees. The colors are colors that are in nature." 

 

 

The Artistic Process
Installation detail of glass tile from the wall to the art glass window.
Installation detail of glass tile from the wall to the art glass window.

From there, I designed the full sized pattern for Jeff Springett, Springett Tile to install the glass tile for the “pebbles,” then created full sized patterns for the art glass window. With Pro-Tech Welding and Fabrication, stainless steel frames were designed for the glass to allow for regular cleaning between the art glass and the insulated glass in the window. Remember it’s a shower and a steam room. Lots of moisture. The upper part of the window is clear glass.

The privacy section below is UltraSea, a dimensional cast glass designed with hundreds of recessed areas to accommodate as many tiny glass tiles on both sides of the glass. Each tile was meticulously separated from its mesh backing and fixed to the embossed UltraSea glass. A unique space with extraordinary needs was created with attention to detail from design to installation.

"Incorporating Nancy's technical and creative skills combined with my creative skills and the customer's feedback was as if we'd worked together for 100 years! It always turns out the way we picture it. It's fun to work with creative people to put it all together!" Ayse Lewis

Editor's note: Thank you to Ayse and to the Baron’s for having the vision! And to Jeff for a great job with the marble and glass tile wall.

 

 

Divider Screen Details


A divider screen was also made of UltraGlas' UltraSea texture with glass tile in the vanity area. Vanity area not shown. Detail shown to the right.

To see more Architectural Art Glass Installations click here. Check out the Architectural Glass section and the previous newsletter that include feature projects.

 

 

 

Just for Fun, Win an Art Glass Blessing.

The first person who guesses the correct number of little blue tiles used on the front and back of the shower windows wins an Art Glass Blessing of their choice. Send your answers to Nancy@nancygong.com.

 

 

 

 

Nancy Gong & Paul Knoblauch Collaborate




Left: Front view. Right: Back side view. The design embraces elements of an urban neighborhood: visual, creative, colorful, balanced with diversity and full of life. ARTWalk sculpture for Doug Rice. Glass and steel. Presented at ARTWalk Alive! 2008 Nancy Gong and Paul Knoblauch

Left: Front view. Right: Back side view. The design embraces elements of an urban neighborhood: visual, creative, colorful, balanced with diversity and full of life. ARTWalk sculpture for Doug Rice. Glass and steel. Presented at ARTWalk Alive! ©2008 Nancy Gong and Paul Knoblauch

 

Designed for Doug Rice, outgoing Executive Director of ARTWalk of Rochester as a thank you and remembrance of all that he has contributed to the community from the beginning of ARTWalk till now. A loose collaboration with Paul Knoblauch, metal sculptor known for his fun colorful compositions resulted in the dynamic sculpture pictured above.

I suggested the glass be in the shape of a tower to reference the urban setting of ARTWalk, and that it be surrounded by Paul's colorful constructions to be referenced as trees, people or art on the avenue. Anne Lovely, ARTWalk Board representative and Paul liked the idea.

I like to have all the details worked out on with meticulous scaled drawings before I begin working with glass. Paul on the other hand likes to design on the whim. I never "saw" what he was going to do. At first, I wanted the glass design to be simple so the glass design would not compete with the metal design. But there is nothing simple about ARTWalk or the passionate colorful left and right brained friendly giant Doug Rice persona. And I thought "wait a minute, they want a piece of art work, not just a piece of glass with a name on it!" The glass design evolved into a mini rendition of the energy of the people and art in the neighborhood. It even includes references to curb cuts in the street which were thoroughly researched and presented to urban planners by Doug and a few neighbors. I couldn't resist adding the big dipper and the North Star, the guiding star etched on top to remind him of all those meetings at Starry Nites Cafe!

Etched images on the front of the glass are mysteriously reflected onto the back of the tower. Optical crystal glass with a dichroic finish is what gives the glass its clarity and color. The colors shift from turquoise to gold to magenta to a bluish purple. This carefully engineered glass combined with artistic planning make the images of the neighborhood even more dynamic. Clearly this is the right place for flashy glass. Just as Doug would have it.

By the way for all you architects and designers looking for fresh ideas, this incredible dichroic glass is now available in large sheets! Call me at the studio 585-288-5520 for more info.

The Look of an Aquarium
Above: The excitement of the avenue etched on polished crystal with a dichroic finish. Wish you could see this one in person!
Above: The excitement of the avenue etched on polished crystal with a dichroic finish. Wish you could see this one in person!

Infinite wisdom from Doug Rice: "You're beautiful. Don't ever change." I thought it appropriate to include this on the sculpture and to exchange this expression with Doug as he steps aside from ARTWalk.

Interesting. In the evening with light being reflected, when the glass is lit from the base below, the glass etching has the look of an aquarium with turquoise blue water. The look is captivating and intriguing. Change the angle you look at the art and the transmissive light takes on a magenta color and throws magenta colored shadows.

In keeping with ARTWalk’s approach to commissioning art, both Paul and I were given free artistic reign with the design. Thank you ARTWalk! And thank you Doug for all that you have done! The finished 15"w x 17"h x 13"w glass and steel sculpture was a real joy to create, something new and a great surprise for all of us!

Solutions Studio & Spa's Retreat to Renew




Elements of earth, metal, water and wood usher clients into Solutions Studio and Spa-s new retreat. Artist Nancy Gong works with UltraGlas UltraSwirl as the water element.

Elements of earth, metal, water and wood usher clients into Solutions Studio and Spa’s new retreat. Artist Nancy Gong works with UltraGlas UltraSwirl as the water element.

Two sisters, Jennifer Grimm, Jackie Leturneau, Stylists and their mom, Judy Fridd have been in the salon business for 14 years. They turned a house on a busy road into a salon and it never felt right. Right next door, after a year of construction, along with Mik Leturneau, Business Manager, their dream for a state of the art spa and salon has come to fruition. The old salon in the house was torn down.

Today, soothing elements of earth, metal, water and wood usher clients into Solutions Studio and Spa's new retreat. A glass feature wall stands between the reception area and the color mixing room. Dimensional cast glass brings daylight into the color mixing room. In keeping with the elements theme, Janis Reed, Interior Designer was looking for glass that would emulate the water element. After visiting the studio it became clear to Janis and the owners that there was no match for UltraGlas' dimensional embossed UltraSwirl glass. Jackie Leturneau reports "It's even better than we thought! People come in and they are speechless. They are wowed by the beauty. They take a deep breath and they are calmer. With less anxiety, their treatments are more enjoyable."

As UltraGlas distributor for over 20 years and art glass designer / consultant for 29 years, I also assisted with interpreting their logo, fabrication and placement. With the inclusion of intriguing art glass as the focal point, no doubt, once you step inside the spa, a feeling of calm settles in and a good bit of the day to day tension goes away. What a great way to start a treatment.

Scintillating, Not Overwhelming
Fluid lines of UltraGlas UltraSwirl provide a soothing environment and provide contrast for Solution's "S" logo.
Fluid lines of UltraGlas UltraSwirl provide a soothing environment and provide contrast for Solution's "S" logo.

 

For more information on UltraGlas architectural art glass and glass tile or to see this dynamic embossed glass in person, contact Nancy@nancygong.com or call the studio at 585-288-5520 for a presentation. The full line of glass in large sample sizes are here at the studio along with architecural glass installations. Choose from low profile textures and highly dimensional textures which can be specified alone or combined for a custom design. Also, a fabulous collection of UltraGlas Tile samples are here for your color matching. I am here to help you with all your UltraGlass needs. You may also visit: http://www.ultraglas.com

Canandaigua Lake Etching in Black & White

 

I like to think differently. One glass artist I know enjoys making his glass look like old artifacts, another disguises their glass work as a porcelain like medium. Glass doesn't always have to have light behind it. Glass doesn't always have to look like glass. Sometimes the beauty of glass is overwhelming with all the glitz. I believe that glass can be beautiful even when it is quiet.

Many of the artistic processes I work with look totally different with no light behind it. So, just for fun, I'd like to share this glass etching for the wall with you. This image of Canandaigua Lake       8-1/2" x 15" looks like a print. But it's really a glass etching made with a variety of textures. Although it appears to be simple in appearance, the etching is created in 5 separate stages. As an artist, for me, it's really more about where the art work takes your mind than how many pieces there are. And sure, it's interesting to know how it is done. Some familiarity with the creative process helps in some ways to bring us closer to the art. Just for you, for this article, I counted the number of stages it took to create the etching. History has its precedence.

 

If you have a special place or feeling you'd like interpreted in glass, either as a print as above, or as in the Map Series shown on the web site: http://www.nancygong.com/HandPaintedArt.html, contact me at the studio: nancy@nancygong.com  A current leaded glass project is an interpretation of the city Sidi Bou Said in Tunisia, known as the blue and white city. What a great research trip that was! More later. 

 

New Mini Blessings Scrolls
Mini Blessing Scroll in transparent cyan blue. Good Fortune, Good Health, Longevity and Happiness & Auspiciousness.
Mini Blessing Scroll in transparent cyan blue. Good Fortune, Good Health, Longevity and Happiness & Auspiciousness.

I love the concept of Chinese scrolls. In the above photo, the calligraphy translates from the top as: Good Fortune. Next, line 2 is Good Health because you have to have Good Fortune to have Good Health. The 3rd line is Longevity. Generally, one needs to have Good Fortune and Good Health before they can have Longevity. Lastly, at the bottom is Happiness & Auspiciousness. In the traditional Chinese way of thinking, you have to have Good Fortune, Good Health and Longevity before you can have Happiness and Auspiciousness! Passed from one generation to the next: this, I learned from my father. I am pleased to share this with you from one culture to another. 

New Mini Blessings Scrolls are a scaled down variation of the original Blessings Scrolls. You can see the original wall mounted Blessing Scrolls by visiting http://www.nancygong.com/SmallWorks1.html, then scroll down the page. The original one of a kind Blessing Scrolls, 8"w x 22"h x 2-1/2"d are available through the studio.

Freestanding Mini Blessings Scrolls, 3-1/2"w x 7-1/2"h x 1-1/2" thick, are beautiful works of art for inside or outside display. The Minis are available at Craft Company No. 6., The Gallery Store at the Memorial Art Gallery and at the Parkleigh. Color will vary, so if you see a color you like, grab it, it may not be available again! 

Phoenix Red, New Color for Art Glass Blessings!




Double Joy; Double Happiness Art Glass Blessing in hot Phoenix Red fading out to a sweet orange. Limited quantities of Phoenix Red Art Glass Blessings. Find or order yours now for the holidays.

Double Joy; Double Happiness Art Glass Blessing in hot Phoenix Red fading out to a sweet orange. Limited quantities of Phoenix Red Art Glass Blessings. Find or order yours now for the holidays.

Many of you have been asking for years and finally, I am pleased to introduce you to Art Glass Blessings in a fabulous Phoenix Red cast glass. The glass is quite extraordinary because we’re never really sure of what we’re going to get due to the glass making process. To get the deep, red, the glass is heated in the furnace and hand poured into a mold. The glass is covered to raise the temperature of the molten glass to a very high temperature. It's sort of like boiling milk. The process: striking the glass. Once the very hot temperature is attained, the cover is removed. The Phoenix Red glows in the center then fades out to a flaming red orange at the edges with lots of handmade characteristics. Shown above is the first batch. In the second batch, a sweet orange center fades out to a golden yellow. It reminds me of the sun. Future batches will vary in color. So, again, if you see the red you like, grab it now! The Red blessings will only be available in the 5” diameter and may have limited availability. Let me know how you like the colors!

The Art Glass Blessings can be found at:

Craft Company No. 6

The Gallery Store at The Memorial Art Gallery

Parkleigh

Balance

 

Thoughts to share:

"A good painter has two main objects to paint, man and the intention of his soul. The former is easy, the latter hard as he has to represent it by the attitude and movement of the limbs."  ~Leonardo da Vinci

In an article for Architectural Digest's Art Notebook, Steven M.L. Aronson wrote: "Why Art Matters. . . In today's fast moving world, is there really time to stop and smell the Renoir roses? Life is short, but art is long – and it's what our degree of civilization will be judged by when all the little squabbles that occupy us now have been forgotten. The art will survive. . . " May 2006.

I do love the ability to "travel to different places" through my art. So many new ideas. So many new subjects and ways of thinking. It is always a thrill to create art that brings joy and meaning to other peoples lives. So often it is art that is kept when a building's interior is redesigned. Art has a way of becoming sentimental, often being passed from one keeper or generation to the next. Art is the feeling, the connection in what we leave behind. Good art will be here in this world for a very long time. I am both pleased and honored to have my art play this role. Let me know if I can help you with the creation of a special work of art.

Artfully yours,

Nancy 

P.S. Please do pass this on.

GGW e Vignettes is published monthly, a time permits and or as the need for communication prevails by the studio of Gong Glass Works for its patrons, associates and friends. Editor and Proprietor, Nancy Gong. All glass designs and contents © 2008 Nancy Gong. All photos by Nancy Gong unless otherwise noted. To be sure to receive Gong Glass Works' "e studio newsletter" add gong@gong.pmailus.com to your address book. Do not send e-mails to the pmailus.com address, it is a server address. With GGW "e" Vignettes vs the studio post mail program, you'll get to see and hear more about exciting studio projects. To contact Nancy at Gong Glass Works e-mail to: nancy@nancygong.com or call 585-288-5520 Privacy Policy: Absolutely no information from the studio list will be shared or sold to another party.

 

 

 

Nancy working on meticulous detail while making hand chipped glass for Engineer's Have Fun Too! Photo by Doug Rice

Recharging, artist enjoying the fresh air. Photo by Dave Weagley