Acclaimed Esque Studio glassmakers Justin Parker and Andi Kovel are modern masters of an ancient art and have exhibited with the likes of Kiki Smith and Jim Dine. Their pieces push the limits of their medium. “We are so accustomed to each other’s movements and techniques,” says Kovel, “that we have no need for verbal communication. We know our parts of the dance.” Esque recycles 100 pounds of glass a month and uses wind-powered furnaces in its New York studio.
Jess Panza, founder of L.A.-based Verre, uses a traditional French technique called pâte de verre. For this collection, “crushed glass is hand-molded into round bowls, then cooked to perfection to give each one a granular sparkle,” she says. “We basically approach the glass as if we were in a kitchen, baking and creating things from scratch. No two bowls are alike, but they go together beautifully.”
David Scheid had a job removing and installing stained-glass windows in his 20s, then spent a decade traveling around the world as a tour manager for bands like Girl Talk and Interpol. A couple of years ago friends in L.A. mentioned they wanted a stained-glass window. Scheid picked up his lead dikes and glass cutter. “I realized that I was really missing a creative outlet,” he says. Scheid works in an old barn in upstate New York and a studio in L.A.