Michael Cohn Artist Bio

Started working in glass in 1968 at UC Berkeley.

Michael set up his first studio in 1973 in Berkeley, California, and has been operating glassblowing studios continuously since that time.  He is currently co-owner of Cohn-Stone Studios in Richmond, Ca.   Started working in glass in the 1970’s.

For as long as I can recall, I have made things with my hands. It is what I do. It is one of my primary forms of expression. I am also completely fascinated by fire — by its incredible power to destroy as well as to create.  It is appropriate then, that I have devoted the greater part of my life to the creation of objects of glass (or primarily glass).

The act of glass making is elemental — it involves earth, air, fire and water. It is a series of choreographed steps — a fiery fluid dance frozen in motion. Even after working so closely with this material for so many years, I am still amazed that a pile of what appears to be basically sand can be shoveled into the furnace and the next day can be transformed into essentially anything ones imagination, skill and strength will allow. Physics, alchemy and magic each play a part in the process.

I am inspired by the purity of the classical forms and the beauty and diversity of the natural world, as well as by the ingenuity and functionality of machinery. I derive equal satisfaction in the creation of high quality decorative and/or sculptural glasswork as well as in the design and construction of the furnaces, ovens and other equipment which make the work possible.

Selected Collections

  • Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC
  • Oakland Museum, CA
  • Corning Museum of Glass, NY
  • Museum fur Kunsthandwerk, Frankfurt, Germany
  • Huntington Museum, WVA
  • National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Japan
  • Toledo Museum of Art, OH
  • Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth, Australia
  • High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA
  • Kestner Museum, Hanover, Germany
  • Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA
  • Musee de Design et d’Arts Appliques/Contemporains, Lausanne, Switzerland
  • San Francisco Fine Arts Museums, CA
  • J P Lannan Foundation, Palm Beach, FA

“Space Cup”
Michael Cohn

“Roll over Mondrian and tell Brancusi the news_ #49”
Michael Cohn

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