Whoa. What a wild ride.
Alex and I got into NYC with no events except the obvious, being greeted by high humidity, high heat...master blaster summertime. We were dropped off at the Cornell Club, and went west looking for a cab, which wasn't a problem. We got to our hotel, which had fixed the systematic air conditioning failure that Rob was treated to. We put our things down with hope to get a snack and take walk. I was stunned by the heat, so we had our snack and went to J. Crew to get shorts for Alex (he is delighted with them, telling me that they are "cute"(his words). We met up with the jolly Kitty Robbie team--and had dinner with them and the hot glass team (a treat).
The next day was a full Governors Island Day. Kitty was on an early ferry to get to the site to pack the work from the day before, set up chairs, and take lunch orders. It is amazing to watch our girl engage--and to see how those experiences with the planning and designing for Hampshire's theatre productions yield a planning, thoughtful, proactive worker that I did not have any idea existed inside our dear girl. However, we ferried over around an hour later and stayed the entire afternoon. We walked down the new New York Boulevard--along the East River--another inspired park (very reminiscent of the amazing High Line park) to the Ferries--after buying a bag of italian goodies from JoeMozz (joemozz.com) which caused Alex to think that maybe, just maybe being in the NYC area might be an amazing place to go to college. We saw helicopter, many types of watercraft and ferries, along with little plantings, nice chairs and chaise for people to stretch out in the breezy riverside park--to take in the sunshine and have a free day in nature. This is not the NYC we lived in. Kinder and gentler. Much more inviting as a place to live. It makes me proud that friends of ours were part of changing this paradigm.
The Ferries are clean, well organized and run, and a friendly/fun introduction to a blistering day. It is a breezy, free way to see a bit of NY harbor, recalibrate from urban to rural as getting to Governors Island is a distant park--with the NY skyline as a backdrop to the grass and nature the island promises. It was good to be in the shade, watching the hot glass presentations with designers Eric Ku, and brother/designers Chris and Dominick Leong. For me, it was the right thing to do---to see how others responded to the same input I had, to watch the crowd, to see how the GlassLab team worked and worked with the designer. So when it came to being my turn, I was ready to see if we could make a soft serve ice cream cone. First one was close....second one was fabulous! It was so much fun--with the cone being made as a hollow form, and then a conical form stuck inside to support the hot glass swirl--which went on just as I had hoped, like a coil pot. The crowd was with me as the thing we were working on was something tangible, something fun, something that caused the families of kids to come to the stage and watch closely. I was enjoying it so much, I asked Steve if I could have a headset and he and I had a little repartee--the Louis Prima and Keeley Smith of GlassLab. The call and response approach to talking about the glass was really fun, and got some energy going for the crowd and the glass team.
I loved working with GlassLab. Why? It is a rare thing to be able to work in a making environment where an idea can be spun into a reality by a team of thinking, problem-solving glass designers--who not only can figure out the idea could be made into reality--but then actually doing it--working as one--thinking doing acting. This team thinks, acts and does at 100% alertness--always thinking, pushing, reconsidering during this graceful process of interweaving skill, talent, and smarts trading off as often as the reheat door is opened. GlassLab personifies the power of collaboration.
Prototyping in this efficient way with more brains on the idea is singular--so getting from testing an idea to actually finalizing and finishing is fast with a finished piece worthy of talking about in an hour and a half. The team made 3 complete cones and a single cake cone in less than an hour and a half. I am blown out of my chair and cannot wait until I get another shot with this remarkable group of glass professionals--to see what we can do, what we can learn, what we can feel. It is a powerful thing that this Museum of Glass has--How to keep it going...and have more of us collaborate with with team--is key to seeing the world change it's view of glass, glassmaking and the amazing teams. I am a believer and disciple now. True Love 4ever.