Painting On Glass: Transparency, Imagery and Layers

May 22-26, 2017

Will be taught by Jeff Zimmer

Cost: $900.00 US – Includes all materials


This course is about creating three dimensional images on layers of glass. We will exploit the transparency of glass and layer techniques and images to collage and create a sense of space. We will use hand painted enamels and photo-sensitive sandblast resists.

We will begin with exercises and assignments, and will progress to creation of one or more personal pieces.  Before and during the workshop, please consider some (not necessarily all) of the following questions:

  • What types of spaces or volumes are you interested in?  What draws you to them?
  • Why would you want to depict something in 3D space?
  • Why would you want to depict something in glass?
  • What role does the medium have to the work you create?
  • What (if any) is the role of light in your work?
  • Does the history of painting on glass and/or stained glass inform your work?  What about the history of painting? Installation? Art? Performance?
  • What are your observations, opinions and beliefs?  Does the work you make express these (and should it)?
  • What work do you make?
  • Who do you make your work for?
  • How do you engage with hand-made and digital processes?  What values do you associate with each?  What other associations do you have with each?
  • Is your work “permanent” or “temporal”?

Our experience will be enhanced through discussions and presentations. Each student will bring 10 images in jpg format of their work for discussion.  We will also discuss how creating a 3-D image affects its content and our experience of it.

The course will be of interest to individuals looking to expand their practice into a new dimension. Those new to painting on glass will learn both the basics of the craft and novel applications, while those with experience of image-making on glass will learn to see their work in a new way.

Instructor Bio:

“I am fascinated by exploring areas between certainty and doubt, and provoking a sensual experience of light. In a polarized political and social atmosphere I view ambiguous subject matter and visual presentation as political acts. By creating enigmatic works, I intend to seduce the viewer into being comfortable with ambiguity.

Through my technique, I am able to convey a sense of the volume of space. The images are built through multiple firings of enamels on many layers of glass, allowing a depth of space within which objects ‘move’ as the viewer moves around the piece as imagery on each layer shifts in relation to the others and to the light.”

Originally from North Dakota, Jeff Zimmer is now a resident of the UK living in Edinburgh, Scotland.  He received a MDES in Glass & Architectural Glass, at the Edinburgh College of Art, (ECA), where he is now an instructor.

In the UK, Jeff has been making quite a name for his artwork – featured in the British Glass Biennale, shown in a collaboration between Contemporary Applied Arts & Contemporary Glass Society, and has exhibited at the Perth Museum and Art Gallery, in the UK.

Jeff Zimmer (b. 1970, USA) is a Tutor at the University of Edinburgh, taught in the Glass Department at Edinburgh College of Art, and has taught at Pilchuck (US), Bild-Werk Frauenau (DE), North Lands Creative Glass (UK), Berlin Glas (DE) and The National Sculpture Factory (Cork, IR).  He has studied image making on glass with Judith Schaechter, Cappy Thompson (Assistant), Susan Stinsmuehlen-Amend (Assistant), Mark Angus, Walter Lieberman, Michael Bullen and others.  He won Second Prize at the 2014 Coburg Prize for Contemporary Glass and was both a 2016 Fellow at Wheaton Arts and the 2014 Stephen Procter Fellow at the Australian National University.  His work is in the permanent collections of the European Museum for Modern Glass/Veste Coburg, Victoria & Albert Museum, Glasmuseet Ebeltoft, Glasmuseum Frauenau and North Lands Creative Glass, and has appeared four times in New Glass Review.  From Washington, DC, he currently lives and works in Edinburgh, UK.

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