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2013 spring

Welcome to the SFSU glass program web presence.  This page describes the current semester.  Other pages (the links in the blue banner at the top) contain information about past semesters, our studio, and links to other glass resources.

This course is for all levels. Emphasis is on the creation of sculptural artwork through explorations in molten glass. Technique and aesthetics will be taught. Students will have their own practice time outside of class. Course may be repeated for a total of 9 units.

This class will include of survey of glass working techniques and history as well as develop the skills required to plan, articulate, and execute designs. We will explore the changing dialogues that exist between traditional craft mediums and contemporary art through the practice of manipulating glass, drawing, and writing. You will be expected to keep a sketchbook/journal that reflects your experiences in and out of the class in regard to your creative pursuits.

visiting artists this semester

  • Feb 18,21: Luca Ratazzi (guest lecturer)
  • Mar 11: Erik Eiserling
  • Apr 3: Elin Christopherson

blow-slot schedule

Also available here for adding to your own calendar, and as a web page.

class schedule

Mon January 28 First class.  Introductions: equipment operation, studio procedures and protocol, safety and cold-working demo.

Wed January 30: Lecture: Glass processes and applications. Assignment: For Monday bring in 3 images of objects that you find inspiring. Sketch 3 things that you would like to make in glass.

Monday February 4:  In class exercise assignment: Bring in a box of materials that you think might be useful for 3d construction. (paper, cardboard, tape, toothpicks, clay, wood, nails, screws, sticks, twigs, rocks) whatever.

Wednesday February 6Gathering 101. In class exercises and repetition. Attendance mandatoryDue on Monday Feb. 25: 

The Replica: Create four clear objects using whatever methods you like. Two of the objects must be representative of a natural form and two objects must replicate something that is manufactured. You may not choose as your subject, something that exist in the world as glass. Consider the details carefully.

Monday February 11: Timing and Temperature. Tips for staying happy in the glass shop.

Wednesday February 13: 6 pm lecture at CCA San Francisco campus, Timkin hall: Nick Weinstein

Monday February 18:  Luca Ratazzi guest lecturer

Wednesday February 20:  Luca Ratazzi guest lecturer

Monday February 25: First Assignment Due: The Replica.  Slides. Installation and Public works.

Wednesday February 27: Punties for every day of the week.

Monday March 4: Glass sculpting basics

Wednesday March 6: Glass sculpting cont’d

Monday March 11: Erik Eiserling: Visiting Artist

Wednesday March 13: Visiting Artist Review

Monday March 18: Introducing Color (bar, frit, powder, shards).

Wednesday March 20: Color Cont’d. Pulling and using cane.

Studio open for spring break

Monday March 25: no class (spring break).

Assignment for Feb. 810 designs for utilitarian objects. You may sketch or collect images. Items need not be derived from a glass making context.

Wednesday March 27:  no class (spring break).

Sunday March 31: Studio Clean up 5pm

Monday April 1: Campus closed Ceasar Chavez Day

Wednesday April 3: Elin Christopherson Visiting Artist

Monday April 8:  assignment due in class: 10 utilitarian designs 

Wednesday April 10: Utility bowls, jars, lids, and handles, and spouts.

Monday April 15: Dissecting the Goblet into useful parts.

Wednesday April 17: The Goblet Cont’d (proper cup making, stem design, and blown feet). 
Taking the technique, but leaving the goblet behind.....

Monday April 22: Luca Rattazi: visiting artist

Wednesday April 24: Luca Rattazi: visiting artist

Monday April 29: Designing and problem solving sculptural designs. 1 page proposal for your final project due in class.

Wednesday May 1: Incalmo Vessels

Monday May 6: Multiple part sculpture making. (studio management)

Wednesday May 8: Showing and displaying work. How to properly finish a glass project.

Monday May 13: The most beautiful thing?

Wednesday May 15: final Critique

Sunday May 19: last blowing day.  Barbeque at Mike's (TBD).

class policies

materials fee

There is a $298 materials/lab fee payable to the bursar's office and confirmed by a stamped form given to the instructor. Failure to do so may result in forfeiture of blow slots.


3 missed classes lowers you one letter grade. The same will occur for each additional class missed. Your main responsibility is to your blow slot and to your partner, but missing class will compromise the cohesiveness of the class. 

Let your partner know as soon as possible if you can't make your blow slot, and ask them how they want to handle this - some like to select an alternate partner themselves, some will want you to help them find one.


Participation = weekly crits + attendance
Midterm critique 20%
Final critique 20%

images and videos

Glass Blowing
ART 547

A class from San Francisco State University College of Extended Learning

Instructor Nate Watson 

Class dates Jan 28 - Mar 27 2013, plus Apr. 3 - May 22.

Class times  6:30-9:30pm Mon+Wed 

Studio closed (no blow slots) roughly  Mar 28-Apr 2.

Glass sales: TBD. Sale inventory