Glass artists Laurie Thal and Dan Altwies have spent this past year pushing the boundaries of glass blowing — and they’re ready to show off what their hard work had created. They call it Icarus.
Icarus is a light-blue winged figure made of three layers of glass that stands 32 inches tall and is 60 inches wide. It’s a piece that normally resides in the artists’ home but will be moved to their open studio for the Fall Arts Festival so glass aficionados can see exactly the type of creativity the duo can execute.
Thal Glass Studio will be hosting two sets of open studios that showcase the breadth of the artists’ work, from vases and bowls to their large architectural pieces.
“If we take things to a gallery, you only see a handful of pieces,” Thal said. “But here in the studio, not only do [visitors] see such a variety of work, but we can explain the process and show them all of the equipment.”
It’s the collaboration between the two that makes their glass pieces unique, Thal said.
“[Dan] brings to it a whole background [of] working with the shapes of flat glass,” Thal said, “and I have a background that’s working with fluid, hot, liquid glass.”
Before Thal and Altwies start any piece they have a general idea of their destination.
But they also leave room for creativity in the process.
“I don’t think that’s something that you can articulate — why you draw a piece the way you do,” Thal said. “It’s a feeling that comes through.”
Part of where they draw their inspiration comes from right outside their Wilson studio, which sits adjacent the Snake River. And if visitors can see Jackson’s nature in the glass, the two have me their goal, Thal said.
“I’m always in awe of this amazingly gorgeous valley that we live in,” she said. “If we can have any of those feelings reflected in our work, then I think we’ve succeeded.” ￼