Carved Art Glass – Astronomy Window – Vail, CO

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A new home in Vail, CO, features a 3 story tower that houses an elevator and a spiral staircase.  Crowning the tower is a domed observatory with a highly sophisticated research-quality telescope.  The homeowners, Sam and Lu, are accomplished scientists with a passion for astronomy.

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Lu commissioned Legacy Glass to create art glass for the 15 ft tall window in the tower.  The original idea was a wrought iron looking design that would complement a European style mountain home.  We suggested that perhaps we could include something about astronomy since that would best reflect their personalities and a key function of the tower.  Lu visibly lit up and said, “Go for it!”

At first glance, the final design looks nothing like astronomy and more like a wintry scene of aspen trees.  But upon closer look, you can see all the circles represent Lu’s favorite constellation, Scorpius, with each circle in its precise location and in precise diameter.  Click here to see Scorpius

Maslak - tower - final designRepresenting Sam’s favorite constellation, Seven Sisters (or Pleiades), was a bit more complicated.  It’s not like we could just throw more circles out there and call it a day.  Instead, we created seven women hidden in the trees.  More precisely, they ARE the trees.  If you look at the left side of the design in the center, you’ll see the front view of nude female torso.  Next to it on the right, you see a backside, next a front, higher up a back, down lower a front, up again for a back, and front again for a total of seven women.   Click here to see Seven Sisters

Sam himself is also represented in the design.  In the top right area, you can see his sideways glance and grin – the two circles and arc of a smile.

Click here to see Sam

While Legacy Glass created the design, the image was sandblasted (hand carved) into glass by Colorado artist Jacklyn Potter.  The circles were carved into one side of the glass and the trees/women into the other side, which gave the piece depth and dimension.  We used premium Starfire Glass – a piece 10 ft tall x 5 ft wide, ½ inch thick, and weighing 700 lbs – which was tempered after carving.  It took six men to lift the art glass and install it into the tower window.

The glass art is called “Sam, Scorpius, and the Seven Sisters” and has become a focal point and theme of their home – a story they get to tell and pass down with their heritage home.  It was also highlighted in an article in Vail-Beaver Creek Magazine:  http://www.vailbeavercreekmag.com/Vail-Beaver-Creek-Magazine/Holiday-2010/A-Home-for-the-Stars/

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