J. Stankard is internationally acclaimed as a living master in the art of
the paperweight. Born in Massachusetts, the second eldest of nine children, Paul
moved with his family when he was a teenager to South Jersey, the home of the
oldest glass-blowing industry in the USA. He attended the local Technical Institute
where he chose the scientific glass-blowing course, and went on to a successful
career in industry from 1963 to 1972 blowing scientific instruments.
his spare time Paul experimented first with making glass giftware and animals,
which sold successfully. He later moved on to making paperweights. He studied
the beautiful antique French paperweights, but there was no one who could teach
him how to make these, so he had to invent his own techniques. In 1971, Paul's
first solo exhibition of paperweights completely sold out. It was not long after
that Paul gave up his day job and became a full-time paperweight artist. He was
one of the pioneers of the studio glass movement.
Paul Stankard's autobiography
floral sculptures, often with "root people" made in flame-worked glass,
are known for their organic credibility and creativity. For over 35 years, his
work has celebrated nature as magical realism. It is technically brilliant, evocatively
mystical, and spiritually significant. The example shown above is called "To Work
is To Pray: A Meditation on the Prayer of Bees". It measures 6 3/4" high by 8 3/4"
long and 3 1/4" wide.
Stankard's work is represented in major museums all around the world. He is a
Fellow of the American Craft Council, a recipient of the Urban Glass Award, and
an Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from Rowan University and Muskingum College. Paul
recently authored an autobiography entitled "No Green Berries or Leaves:
The Creative Journey of an Artist in Glass."