As autumn temperatures dip, downtown there is a spot hovering at thousands of degrees where stunning creations take shape. That spot is Lindsay Art Glass, Benicia’s renowned glassblowing studio and gallery. This month the studio proprietors invite visitors to experience glassblowing for themselves, and the gallery showcases a wide array of unique glass decorations for the holidays.
Lindsay Art Glass was founded in February 1998 by David and Ann Lindsay. David, a native of Vallejo, started out in 1975 as an apprentice at Benicia’s Nourot Glass Studio, where he eventually became a partner. Ann and David started out with just a shell of a building, and it took them six months to build the studio. At its core is the furnace, which maintains a steady 2100 degrees and takes a week to heat up or cool down. There are also annealing ovens that slowly cool glass creations from 1900 degrees to about 100 over a 12-hour period.
Starting up in October, the studio offers glassblowing demonstrations Tuesday through Friday from 11 to 3:30. Also starting this month, budding glass artists can schedule a session to blow their own glass ornament, with plenty of help from experienced glassblowers. The “Blow Your Own” experience costs $75 per person, and kids 10 and older accompanied by an adult are welcome to take part. The sessions last about 30 minutes, and the ornaments are ready for pick-up the next day. Time slots fill up fast. To book an appointment, email David Lindsay at email@example.com.
The gallery at Lindsay Art Glass debuted at the 1998 Benicia Peddler’s Fair and opened for business that September. It features the work of David Lindsay, along with 80 artists from all over the country and Canada.
David Lindsay’s unique abstract designs masterfully employ compound layering, and his artistry and technical acumen are embodied in his renowned “Sarah” line of vases, perfume bottles, and bowls on hand-blown feet.
In addition to bowls, platters, and paperweights, the gallery also offers intricate jewelry, wall art, purses, beeswax candles, ornaments, suncatchers, coasters, and goblets, as well as some wearables such as silk scarves and jackets.
“Every piece is different,” according to co-founder Ann Lindsay. “Every day someone comes in they might see something new.”
While the majority of artists whose work is offered for sale in the gallery are not locals, there are a couple local glassblowers, in addition to David Lindsay, represented. Angela Fortain, a glassblower and jeweler who manages the day-to-day sales of the business, has her own pieces on display in the gallery, as does Rachel Bautin, whose handcrafted chandelier and other works are offered. A new addition to the gallery’s collection is work by Cincinnati-based artist Nicholas Yust, who makes his abstract colored aluminum panels through a process that mixes chemical patinas and the emulsification of acrylic pigments.
One of the goals of the gallery, according to Ann Lindsay, is to offer pieces that are affordable. “Our prices hit the midranges, and we also try not to compete with other galleries in town that sell Benicia-made art.”
Lindsay Art Glass is located at 109 East F Street, just off 1st Street, in downtown Benicia. Gallery hours are Sunday through Thursday from 11 to 5, Friday from 11 to 7, and Saturday from 10 to 7.
For more information, visit Lindsay Art Glass online at www.lindsayartglass.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 707-748-1336.