West Virginia South April - May 2019 - Page 49

So building it required a little ingenuity. Woodson discovered those church pews at a nearby Habitat for Humanity resale store. The metal that covers the studio’s furnace exhaust pipe was once an awning at The Greenbrier, recovered by the artists from a scrapyard during construction of The Greenbrier’s casino. The inside of the furnaces are coated with Emisshield, a product from an engineer in Blacksburg, Va., that not only serves as a heat shield on space plane technology but saves con- siderable money on the gas bill. Even the containers that hold the colored frit once contained hummus or some other edible item. “It’s been great,” Brand says of the part- nership between the luxury resort hotel and his studio and gallery. In some ways, he’s been as lucky as Jenny. “I had good art teachers,” Brand says. He holds a BFA from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pa., but his degree is in jewelry making. At the time, Tyler did not offer a major in glass blowing, but when Brand was introduced to it in a class, he took to it like a fish to water. “I just liked glass better,” he says. And he was good at it. The first glass he blew just happened to be a cup with a handle, perfect on his first try and shocking to his teacher. Brand knew then he simply had a knack for it. “The really meticulous parts are very exciting,” he says. “On the other extreme, you let gravity and centripetal force shape the roll colors play in the final shape. It’s a real balance.” Over the last 40 years, Brand’s glass has been shown at museums, including the Smithsonian, the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Shows, the Corning Museum of Glass, and it has appeared in several books and magazines. Brand’s work has been selected multiple times for inclusion in New Glass Review. APRIL-MAY '19 ❖ SOUTH ❖ 49