About Al

alanhonnstudioA Minnesota native, Al Honn worked as a professional glassblower in Boulder, CO and on Whidbey Island, WA before returning to settle in his home state. Currently, he is a studio artist and instructor at the Minnesota Center for Glass Arts and Foci Cooperative in Minneapolis.

Exhilarated by the demands of the process, Al enjoys meeting the challenges of timing and intuition required to manage fluid hot glass. In the studio, he states, “it’s important to stay in the moment, open to the ever-present opportunity to defy gravity.” He cites appreciation for the material as his most significant influence and prefers the “glass cowboy” tradition of design and production by a single maker.

Form is the artist’s primary consideration; he often works with clear glass, focusing on surface reflections and interior views to create sculptural, functional goblets, pilsners, tumblers, plates, bell jars, vases and bowls.

My first experience with glass, Al states, was working with glaze formulas for ceramic work. Trying to achieve maximum metallics, I experimented with using canes and shards in handle reservoirs and on platters.

In 1981, in the hot glass studio at St. Cloud State University, that second gather of glass found its way to the floor, puddling into a foot as I blew out the cup of my first goblet. Glass fever took over during the next couple of years during midnight to 4am blow-times, looking out over the Mississippi River at the University of Minnesota, where I received a BFA in 1986. Gary Loch helped me to move on to an apprenticeship with Jim Clarke in Boulder. In 1989, I moved to Whidbey Island, WA where over the next decade I met some of the world’s most incredible glassblowers, taught preschool, chaired the Artist’s Co-op of Whidbey Island and built my own studio. After returning to Minnesota, I opened Al’s Center Saloon in Center City in 2000. My son was born in 2002. I started working at Foci in 2007 and just keep smilin’ …

WATCH AL HEREThis Glass House, an Andrew2 Production


Al’s Center Saloon, Center City MN (more about the neighborhood at chisagolakes.org)

FOCI – Minnesota Center for Glass Arts, Minneapolis MN

The Grand Hand Gallery W2, St. Paul MN

Gustaf’s Galleries, Lindstrom MN

Austin ArtWorks, Austin MN

Al is a member of ArtReach St. Croix

CARE INFO: hand washing recommended, vinegar will remove water spots

3 thoughts on “About Al

  1. Hi Alan
    Mike and I really enjoyed perusing this web site and will check it our periodically. You look great and very happy. Keep smiling!!

  2. Hello Al:

    I remember those midnight to 4am blow times at St Cloud State. I like you caught the glass fever!

    Kevin Whetstone

  3. Hello Al,
    This is a blast from the past. I also remember those late night blow sessions with Eric, Karen and a few others. I’m very impressed with your career. You have continued on where we all wanted to go. I remember critiquing each other’s work with Gary, once a week and thinking how exceptional your work was and it still is today. Congratulations!
    Kelly Rose

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