Author Archives: Lani

Low work tables on rollers, adjustable height stools, and mobile sheet pan racks that once anchored the Glass Lab, now in storage.

After blogging last week about a factory tour and my inability to
prioritize the value of its various human parts by comparing them to
organs of the body, a friend pointed out a profoundly simple truth. read more

“Start time? End time? Breaks? Hourly wage?” Casting Supervisor scrambles to answer a volley of unexpected questions from a Latvian visitor watching his team rolling sheet glass.

Tours of the Bullseye factory can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an
hour or more. Questions range from the tech-nerd’s “Is the coloring
chromophore in red glasses part of the silicon tetrahedra?” to the
sweet-faced 8-year old who wants to know how old he has to be to get a
casting job. read more

“Now back up against the furnaces and stand still.” With the metabolism of a heavily caffeinated chipmunk and the curiosity of a five-year old, Bullseye’s production manager is rarely in one place for long.

Sam Andreakos epitomizes the best of Bullseye’s people. In the 30 years that he’s been in the factory, he’s met and wrestled to the ground every high-speed challenge I’ve seen thrown his way. read more


Dan circa 1975. Forty-something years ago Bullseye’s founder couldn’t decide whether he was prouder of the ingeniously winged glass spreader he’d invented or of the factory surviving its first year in business – a milestone proudly proclaimed on the newly designed T-shirt: “Handcast Glass Since 1974”

We celebrated Dan’s 75th birthday last week with a movie, his favorite fish stew and a wee dram of my favorite single malt. read more

I recently posted some images on Facebook of a factory tour that I led at Bullseye for a group of second and third graders. Then I casually commented that children’s tours helped me to understand “what it is about glass that most attracts kids.”

Kids and Glass: a magic – and sometimes maniacal - match.

I should know better. A friend immediately jumped in and asked me to list “the top 3 or 4 things” that make this material so attractive to kids. read more

The research continues…

I owe this shot to Amy Ferber – one of our favorite party girls!

The second most popular interactive display in Bullseye Gallery’s recent Retrospective exhibition was a set of brightly colored cast-glass wedges. It wasn’t designed with children in mind. It was intended to show the range of possibilities in mixing frits and the gradations related to thickness. read more

Art happens.

Kids love glass – or sand pretending to be glass

The Gallery’s most recent exhibition is a didactic one: Retrospective tells the story of a factory that has always worked with artists. The works on display reflect some of those projects. Among my favorites are those done in the “painting with glass” methods that have flowed out of sessions with masters like Narcissus Quagliata and his friend Rafael Cauduro. read more

At the risk of being charged a chromo-phobe (great book, risky political position on the eve of  BECon’s Chroma-Culture conference), I have to admit to a bias for a recurring aesthetic I observed at this weekend’s COLLECT fair in London.

Going monochrome in the middle of a kaleidoscopic fair may be the way to stand out.

Whether textile, ceramic or glass, the works that grabbed me did so by whispering – even while towering over me.

Piled Higher (and brilliantly) Deeper

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Last year we invited Tanja Pak, Slovenia’s Designer of the Year, to “fuse aesthetics to practicality” in a factory residency that would provide the content for her discussion with Bullseye’s lead fabricator Tom Jacobs on The Poetry of Production at this summer’s BECon conference.

Brian, Trevor, Ted, Tom, and Tanja: Day One

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After we’d toured the kids around the glass factory a week ago, they spent some time in their school studio translating the experience with paper, pencil and clay. I was told that one of their Tour Guides (moi) made a big impression on them. A kind of doughy impression. Something between Francis Bacon and Mr Potato Head.

Moi or mwah?

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