Teaching Artists, Part 2 | Bullseye Glass Co. | Bullseye Glass Co

Teaching Artists, Part 2


In June artist Steve Klein was teaching in La Granja, Spain. By July he had led a professional artist-in-residence program at the Pilchuck Glass School in Washington State. It’s August now and he’s co-teaching a workshop with Kaffe Fassett at North Lands Creative Glass here in Scotland. This fall he’ll be at Bezalel Academy in Jerusalem.

Steve claims to have bad knees. I can’t imagine how much faster he’d move with good ones.

Yesterday I dropped by his class here in Lybster. The studio walls were drenched in the wildest explosions of color, the tables were littered with wild flowers and I spied a sketchbook of notes about Scottish pudding buried under samples of pumpkin and fluorescent orange glasses.


It didn’t quite feel like Steve’s style to me, but that’s one of the sides to Steve that I admire most. He’s the consummate workshop leader: supportive, facilitating, inexhaustible in moving the program along – whether it’s his program or a group effort, or – as this current workshop – the technicolor overflow of his co-teacher’s over-the-top aesthetic.


Deceptively phlegmatic, Kaffe the King of Kolour knits peacefully in the background as two Old Glass Guys obliviously debate the COE of boro v. Bullseye  in the foreground.


Zooming beyond the flurry of glass formulations, it’s pretty clear that the Fassett pallette is pushing the limits of the Bullseye color range.

Steve regularly leads workshops with other artists and designers. He’s taught numerous short courses with artist/educator Jane Bruce. At Pilchuck he teamed up with Richard Parrish to lead the PAiR session.  Just a few years ago he juggled an impressive series of classes in China with Catharine Newell.

Team-taught courses are not the norm in our field. But, done well, they can be the most dynamic. It’s frequently a delicate balance of powerful energies and inspiring – but rarely demure – egos. When it works, it affords all involved the rare chance to be part of some of the most powerful dialogues in the arts. Steve’s stamina, his generosity and his legendary sense of balance have provided the fulcrum for a world of these delicate and inspiring opportunities. All of us in the field of contemporary glass are in his debt for that.

I just hope his knees hold up.


Talk about flexible: This is what Steve’s (Pilchuck) table looked like in July.

This is his (North Lands) table in August:


11 Responses to Teaching Artists, Part 2

  1. Love all the photos. The creativity. Thanks so much for sharing this. Bullseye color palette is awesome, for sure. I hope his knees hold out too!

  2. Holy cow. Love Mr. Klein but Kaffe Fassett too? I finally get to impress the family–my mother and sisters are all expert fiberfolk (knitting, smocking, sewing and all that) and they pretty much worship Fassett. My sister’s saving up to do some kind of pattern workshop with him next year. And now I can tell ‘em I’ve met somebody who hangs out with him…wow.

    At last count I had 7.364 different color samples using BE glass and I haven’t even started on the blues, so the palette’s not all THAT limited.

  3. WOW! what an outpouring of ideas must have flowed from these artists in this large design room at Pilchuck (my favorite room toooo! when you are the PAIR) I think this is called Creative Chaos at it’s finest!!!!! Wish I had of been there.
    P.S. I see Bob is there tooooo!

  4. Lani says:

    Sheesh, Cynthia, why didn’t I know YOU’D know all about KF?! (personally, I’m clueless about quilting etc).

    I suggested to Kaffe that he drop down to Portland after his upcoming tour of WA state (this Oct)… Like I was going to show him something he didn’t already know. He proceeded to tell me all about Oregon (huge quilting festival in Sisters every July?) and Portland (he was a Fan of Daisy Kingdom).

    Gotta get out of my glass rut more often….

  5. I was fortunate enough to attend the PAiR session with Steve Klein and Richard Parrish at Pilchuck and I can certainly attest to the fact that the experience has dramatically affected my work. I’ve begun experimenting more and have several prototypes of new designs. It was an adventure that I treasure and will benefit from far into the future!

  6. It was very kind of you Lani to use Photoshop to erase the bottles of wine on the Pilchuck table.

  7. Mix it, mix it, the people materials and methods. Pity its a long way from here, but great to see. Thanks Lani.

  8. Adrian says:

    Superb glass art.It looks like unbelievable.Hope Steve’s early recovery.

  9. Steve Klein says:

    Thanks Lani. Not just for the kind words, but, for supporting education all over the world. The teaching that many of us do could not happen without the unparalleled and unselfish support of Bullseye.

    I have also been fortunate to have had incredible students. Willing to stretch themselves, try new ideas and ways of working. I’m in touch with many (lots) of former students. I’m so proud of what they are accomplishing in their own work.

    Teaching has also taken me to places that I’ve only dreamt of going in the past. Scotland, Spain, Denmark, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Australia, and who knows where next. All of these places and cultures have inspired me and informed my work.

    You’ve already mentioned some of the people that I’ve had the pleasure of working with. They also inspire me.

    So, as long as I stay booked, my knees cannot fail me. I’m looking forward to many more years of inspiration.

  10. Hi Lani,
    I just want to thank you for hospitality. The fourm was an amazing experience. We are boarding the plane back to ABQ.
    Got to fly.
    Thanks, Michael and Delinda

  11. Welllllllllllll,
    Nice to see and remember these beautiful days I just spent in Lybster……..
    Yes, we are expecting Steve very eagerly hear.
    Lani, you forgot to mention that there will be another class with Steve here, in Israel – by Gil Rephael. They will offer another class to glassies who are not Bezalel students, we are looking forward to this too.
    Hopefully Steve’s knee condition wiil improve soon.

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