Aug 292013

The Stained Glass School, Inc., is actively seeking qualified professionals interested in teaching workshops and classes at the new location in Raytown, Missouri. Interested instructors should send description, outline of class, and materials list. Also include your curriculum vitae, a portfolio of work relevant to the class, and compensation requirements (i.e., teacher’s fee and expenses). Future class dates and schedules are being set for Winter, Spring and the 2015 Pre-Conference Classes in Portland, Oregon. Please consider donating your teaching fee for your first class to help get the school started! Please send all information via email to or to SGAA Headquarters, 9313 E. 63rd Street, Raytown, MO 64133

Aug 292013

The SGAA Stained Glass School has long been known for offering workshops and seminars in conjunction with the Stained Glass Association of America’s Annual Summer Conference. However, in April of this year, the SGAA Stained Glass School took a new step forward in offering top-quality classes at its facility in Raytown, Missouri.

It was fitting that the first class offered should be Stained Glass 101, an introduction to stained glass fabrication and painting. The class was taught by Jerome Durr, then SGAA President, and Bob Markert, SGAA School Director. Students came from all over the Kansas City metro area to take part in the class, which included trips to the Nelson Atkins Museum, Kathy Barnard’s Kansas City studio, and Grace and Holy Trinity Episcopal Cathedral for an afternoon spent studying photographing stained glass in the field.

The next workshop to be offered at the SGAA Stained Glass School facility is A Focus on Enamels with Jim Berberich. At the time of publication of this magazine, this class was already at capacity, and a waiting list had been created in case of vacancies. Students will be coming from around the world to study painting with enamels on glass with painter Jim Berberich, who has taught at past SGAA Annual Summer Conferences and whose work is widely known and respected.

For more information on future SGAA Stained Glass School class offerings, watch this publication; the SGAA Facebook page; and, of course, the various SGAA and School websites, especially

Aug 292013
In my opinion, this year’s Annual Summer Conference, which was held in Indianapolis, Indiana, in early June, was one of the better conferences the Stained Glass Association of America has had in recent years, and the SGAA has a history of quality conferences. This year’s presentations were informative, entertaining, and engaging; the exhibition had some extremely fine pieces that represented stained glass very well; and the venue itself — downtown Indianapolis — was extremely nice, clean, and home to a number of excellent restaurants, not the least of which was the Weber Grill. I know there were a number of others who enjoyed eating there as much as I did, and for them — and for anyone else who might find it interesting — I’d like to point out that their website,, features recipes of some of the dishes they serve there.
I would also like to say a very big thank you to SGAA member Michael “Zimmy” Zimmerman. When I say this conference could not have been what it was without him, that is no exaggeration. Because of my knee injury, I was not able to drive, nor was I able to do much lifting or many of the other things that I regularly do at a conference. Zimmy flew to Kansas City, helped load the truck, drove it to Indianapolis, and helped with every aspect of setup and cleanup above and beyond what he had volunteered to do as chairman of the Exhibition Committee. The SGAA is blessed with many members whose dedication to the Association and whose strength of character and desire to advance the cause of the Ancient Craft is truly impressive; Michael Zimmerman certainly deserves to be recognized as one of those members.
Of course, I also have to mention the 125th Anniversary Celebration at Kokomo Opalescent Glass. What fun that was! I have been fortunate enough to have visited Kokomo in the past and was happy to be there again. I, like most who are involved in stained glass, really enjoy watching sheets of glass being made. While watching the men taking ladles of molten glass from the furnace to the roller, I made the same comment I made last time I was there and the same comment I am sure I will make the next time I am there: I wonder how much I would have to pay them to let me do that job for fifteen minutes?
Our hosts — John O’Donnell, Dick Elliott, and the entire Kokomo Opalescent Glass staff — were wonderful hosts. They treated us to quite a celebration, and it was very nice to be able to celebrate this important milestone with them.
The Stained Glass Association of America’s Annual Summer Conference could not be what it is without the support of our sponsors. (For a complete sponsor list, please see pages 98 and 99; please be sure to support these companies with your business, and let them know you appreciate their support of the SGAA.) Every one of our sponsors is directly responsible for much of the success of the Conference. I would especially like to extend a personal thank you to Jon Rarick of Reusché & Company of T.W.S., Inc., and Robert Jayson of S.A. Bendheim, Inc. These long-time supporters truly understand the vision of the Association and are willing to support that vision as we work for a better future for stained, decorative, and architectural art glass. Not only are they willing to support the Annual Summer Conference, but they also generously support the SGAA Stained Glass School with donations of materials for both conference classes and on-site workshops at the SGAA Headquarters. Gentlemen, I thank you for that support.
I started off by saying I thought this was one of the better Annual Summer Conferences in recent years, and it certainly was! However, I have to say that I am expecting next year’s conference — an Artists’ Retreat at the historic Elms Resort & Spa in Excelsior Springs, Missouri, which is just northeast of Kansas City — to exceed even Indianapolis. The discussion and planning for the Artists’ Retreat has been very exciting. There will be more hands-on classes and workshops as a regular part of the Conference than there has been at recent conferences. This format is not simply a new direction for the Association’s Annual Summer Conference; it is really more a return to our roots and revisiting the format of Conferences long ago, when it was not uncommon for the Association to plan a life-drawing class for its members complete with music provided by a string quartet. Like I said, it has been very exciting to be a part of that planning; you can expect to see much more about Excelsior Springs 2014 over the next several issues as planning progresses.
Aug 292013
All periods of time have their curiosities, positives, and negatives. The art of glass continually unfolds while seemingly taking on a life of its own.
The business world has, for hundreds of years, been a global institution. The difference today is that we have instant views of faraway places and events, with no need to rely on foot, horse, ship, train, or plane. For the most part, we click, double click, and drag, and — voila: we are “there;” we are learning; we get instruction; we are entertained. And we blog. A myriad of opinions are literally at our finger tips. Technology is here to stay.
The materials we work with are basically the same as in the time of Marco Polo. However, technology will afford different ways of using these time-honored materials or, in some cases, not to use the materials at all.
This is where the SGAA finds itself. Individual artists as well as studio teams meld their work to accommodate changing tastes, emerging technology, and instant communication. The SGAA needs to be proactive, serve members, and augment these changes through conferences, workshops, and publications. Our Board of Directors is dedicated, and, with today’s communication, they hear from the members on a daily basis and truly act in the best interests of the whole.
Where the world of art glass will go will be an interesting evolution — a combination of technology and new design. The SGAA will be there to oversee the positives and negatives and, with the support of members, will move onward.


May 142010

The two smaller window sections measure 24"w x 63"h with their wood frames. The middle section measures 44"w x 63"h with its frame.

Constructed in the fifties, the window depicts the different stages of creating a stained glass window. Starting top left with sketching then dropping down to the full size cartoon and then to glass cutting. Top right is glass painting, then firing and glazing. The middle panel depicts Blessed James of Ulm discovering silver stain.

The two smaller window sections measure 24″w x 63″h with their wood frames. The middle section measures 44″w x 63″h with its frame.

The characters in the window are the people who worked at Poremba Studio. Stanley Townes was the artist and painter. Michael Poremba was depicted cutting the glass. Fred Poremba Sr. (then in his early teens) was depicted loading the kiln and his older brother, Ralph Poremba, was shown building the window.


Apr 222010

This Donation Challenge for the Kansas City Summer Conference has been issued by Sue Shea of Stained Glass Resources, Inc., of Hampden, Massachusetts (, an SGAA Fully-Accredited Studio: Make a donation now to the Stained Glass Association of America’s Summer Conference, and donations received by 05/21/10 as a result of this post will be matched dollar for dollar (up to $5,000.00) by Stained Glass Resources, Inc!

To take part in this challenge, contact the SGAA Headquarters at 800.438-9581 or via email at and mention that you are responding to Sue Shea’s challenge when you make your donation.

Mar 122010

The SGAA Stained Glass School is proud to continue its tradition of hands-on classes prior to the Annual Summer Conference for the Stained Glass Association of America. These classes are designed to be professional-level classes, taught by professionals for professionals.

This year, for the Kansas City 2010 conference, a second day has been added to the class schedule to provide for longer, more intensive classes. This will continue next year at the conference to be held in Syracuse, and even longer class schedules are under consideration.

This is an excellent, inexpensive way to increase your knowledge or to expand the expertise of your employees. Classes range in skill level from Beginner to Advanced. Each class description gives exact details of instructor, materials provided or required, skill level and if any previous skills are required.

Beginning with the Kansas City 2010 conference all participants will receive a Certificate of Completion. The hours earned will be eligible for the newly reconstructed program SGAA Certificates of Competence. For more information on the program contact the SGAA Headquarters at 800.438.9581. Click KC2010 Conference Workshops to download the PDF Flier.

Mar 122010

Help fill the Kansas City Hyatt windows and win more than $3,000 in cash and stained glass products!

Let’s fill the windows at the Kansas City Hyatt with the beautiful excitement that is stained glass. As a member or affiliate in good standing you are eligible to really impress the new home city for the Stained Glass Association of America. All panels for sale by consent of artist with proceeds going toward the SGAA Stained Glass School building fund.

1st Place winner will receive over $3,000 in Cash and Prizes

  • $500 Cash
    ·         EvenHeat Hot Shot Kiln
    ·         Free Registration to SGAA 2011 Syracuse Conference
    ·         50 Lbs. of lead from DHD Metals
    ·         25 Lbs. of solder from MAYCO Industries
    ·         Kokomo Glass $275 Gift Certificate
    ·         Reusche $275 Gift Certificate
    ·         S.A. Bendheim $300 Gift Certificate

2nd Place winner will receive over $1,000 in Cash and Prizes

  • $250 Cash
    ·         50 Lbs. of lead from DHD Metals
    ·         15 Lbs. of solder from MAYCO Industries
    ·         Kokomo Glass $150 Gift Certificate
    ·         Reusche $150 Gift Certificate
    ·         S.A. Bendheim $125 Gift Certificate

3rd Place winner will receive over $500 in Cash and Prizes

  • $125 Cash
    ·         50 Lbs. of lead from DHD Metals
    ·         10 Lbs. of solder from MAYCO Industries
    ·         Kokomo Glass $75 Gift Certificate
    ·         Reusche $75 Gift Certificate
    ·         S.A. Bendheim $75 Gift Certificate

Enter Now! Winning Exhibition entries will be heavily promoted in The Stained Glass Quarterly and on the Stained Glass Association of America website. 

Complete Exhibition Rules and Entry Forms at the Stained Glass Association of America’s main site:

You can also register for the KC 2010 Conference and the Hyatt Hotel on the SGAA main website at:

Frequently asked Exhibition Questions:

The SGAA usually has an exhibition theme. Why an open theme this year? We wanted to show off the incredible variety of art that can be created with stained glass – open up your imagination to all of the possibilities of glass.

Why 2ft. x 2ft.? That is the largest size permitted for most airline carry ons. If you are flying, be sure to check with your airlines for specific carry on guidelines or rules for checking through a stained glass panel as luggage. Panels can also be shipped early to the SGAA Headquarters.

Can a studio enter more than one piece? Absolutely! The more the merrier! This is what some studios are doing:

  • Submitting a team project representing their studio.
  • Employees are submitting individual panels. At one studio, the employees are getting together after hours to work on their projects with experienced employees mentoring newer, less experienced employees so that everyone has a chance to create a quality exhibition piece.
  • Studio owners are putting in entries in competition with their employees. What great competitive spirit!
  • One studio owner has created a challenge to their employees. The owner will match the cash prize should an employee win first, second, or third place.

NOTE: Names will not be posted with the exhibition pieces until after the winning entries have been selected.

 See you in Kansas City!