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Glassblowing- Finding success in the melting pot.

Leo and Isaac Tecosky

Brothers Leo and Isaac Tecosky share the same passion for glassblowing. Each one has achieved some degree of success, though neither would consider themselves successful. But they have very different views on their roles as glassmakers. Leo, 29, is a glass artist currently attending graduate school at School of Visual Arts, while Isaac, 26, is strictly a craftsman. Artists have a message in their glass pieces. Craftsmen produce beautiful light fixtures, vases, and the like sans the vision.

The Albuquerque natives have art degrees in sculpting, Leo from Alfred University and Isaac from Hampshire College. From Leo’s point of view, this qualification makes him an artist by default, especially considering he’s always worked in other mediums including metal and neon lights.

“I have an art degree, so I’m an artist,” he said. “I use the trade to make money.” Leo’s glasswork reflects his perspective as an artist. “My art revolves around symbols and deconstructed graffiti,” he said. “But it’s not a transliteration.”

Among steel and neon works, Leo’s glass pieces, many freestanding abstract shapes, feature graffiti wrapping around the contours. He shows blue, black, and white opaque vase-esque pieces in galleries wanting to showcase urban-themed glass. Others are mixed medium with glass, neon lights, and spray paint. Such artworks are less obviously themed, but Leo’s vision as an artist sets him apart from his brother.

Isaac strives to create beautiful glassworks without the vision. He finds sanctuary in the natural movement of the glass material combined with his own craftsmanship. “When I started working glass, it was solely about acquiring a skill,” Isaac said. “And I fell in love with the technique.” Consequently, he works predominantly on production lines for Niche Modern Design, often creating light fixtures in bulk.

That’s not to say Isaac is impersonal with the process. Quite the opposite, in fact. “Glassblowing has to do with imposing my will on the material and at the same time, having its will being imposed on me,” he said. “You’re so consumed with what’s going on in the moment, you don’t have time to be creative.” 

Nonetheless, both brothers have an immense respect for each other’s work. Leo has an additional three years blowing glass and experience around the world, including an apprenticeship at a private studio in Sweden and workshops at the Glass Furnace in Istanbul. “Isaac is a severely talented individual,” Leo said of his brother.

Likewise, Isaac admires Leo’s mastery of both craft and vision in his work. “My brother is the perfect balance between craftsman and artisan,” he said “His work is conceptual yet so well made.”

The Tecoskys are representative of both ends of the glassblowing spectrum in New York City. Artists are drawn to the city for inspiration, while craftsmen have the opportunity to find work on production lines. Leo and Isaac simultaneously seek fame within the glassblowing community, which Isaac defines as being highly respected in the field. 

“There are days when I feel famous,” he said. “It has to do with confidence in my work.”


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