Paul Bendzunas began his journey in glass in 1974, at the University of Georgia in Athens. Primarily self-taught, Paul had to figure out not only how to make art with glass, a material that's normally worked around 2000°F, he also had to learn how to construct his own furnaces and tools.
Paul started his first studio and gallery at Happy Valley in watkinsville, then moving on to a place in downtown Athens.
In 1990, the family bought land and a hand built house "We chose our place here because I need to have contact with the land. I can walk out my door and be in the woods. Our house faces a woods, complete with a creek with ravines and beaver dams. It is like living in a park. My images reflect what is around me. When I worked in my old studio, I had to go somewhere else to recharge. Now I can do it walking from the studio to the house."
When asked why he chose glass for his medium: "I like the immediacy of glass. I can conceptualize and finish a piece in one process. Glass is like watercolor. It needs to be in your mind ahead of time and done swiftly. If you lose a piece, you learn something and go to another. You learn to see the potential of the work and make allowances for those special things that happen when it is in process. You save the 'mistakes' you like and correct the others."
Bendzunas Glass is a working studio and gallery, located in scenic Comer, GA. Located a short drive east of Athens, our studio offers a gallery of our work, demonstrations in our hot shop, and a wide selection of pieces you can purchase. Our Gallery is open to the public, 10AM-5PM Monday through Saturday; demonstrations available by appointment.
Our artists are led by Master Glassblower Paul Bendzunas, with over 40 years of experience. Paul has led his family in the art; all three of his children, Elizabeth, Paul R., and George are accomplished artists and work in our studio, continuing the tradition. We also have several apprentices to whom we are teaching the ropes.