National Honey Bee Day!

August 20 This occasion seems perfect to hold a promotional of my bee-themed glass art. For each piece sold, I will make a 5% donation to Pollinate Minnesota to help support the bees.

Hanging Honey comb

National Honey Bee Day – August 20

How did my obsession with bees start? I have always loved flower gardens and when I planned my garden in MN, my girls were young and I wanted to include plants that would draw butterflies and bees for us to observe. In recent years, the need to grow plants to help bees has become more evident and we are working to replace our grass with clover. About 5 years ago, during a very long, cold Minnesota winter, I started looking up exotic, tropical flowers on the internet to take my mind off the cold. They were incredible and looked like plants from another world. I was inspired and began sketching out fantasy florals out of glass.

When I completed my first one, I took it outside to photograph in the natural sunlight. A little bee kept photobombing my work and I thought, “Not bad, the bees approve!” That started my fascination with bees and I started looking at hives and honeycombs. I experimented with pouring hot glass and texturing it to create glass honeycombs and eventually, I added blown honey pots to the series.

If you are interested in purchasing any of my honeybee items, please email me at aprilmalphursglassart@gmail.com I will create a custom piece for you in the style you select from the photos below. For each item sold, I will make a 5% donation to Pollinate Minnesota, an organization working toward a better Minnesota for pollinators and people through experiential education, advocacy, and policy change. 

Sending off babies

This fall I am sending my youngest off to college and I am sending off sculptures to new homes. With both a little piece of my heart will stay with them as they move onto their new life stage. With both doing the job successfully means parting and stepping back with pride. I was fortunate to get to meet the new owners of each sculpture this week and they are so excited to welcome them into their homes. Cheers to a good life and loving home!

Honeycomb delivered to its new home today. Botanical Fantasies will go to its new home after the MN State Fair ends.

April Malphurs is a 2021 recipient of a Creative Support for Individuals from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This is made possible by the voters of Minnesota thanks to legislation through the arts & cultural heritage fund.

What’s the buzz?

I am excited to announce that you can see me working live at the MN State Fair this Sunday August 29. I am one of twelve artists invited to be a part of Studio: Here at the Minnesota State Fair.  Studio: Here is in it’s ninth year with the goal of giving the public a behind the scenes look at how artists create their artwork. Each artist has one twelve hour day to share their process at the fair.  I will be working this Sunday August 29 9am-9pm in the Fine Arts Building Studio: Here space. It is such an honor for me to be a part of the fair and last night’s preview night felt a little surreal. In MN the fine arts exhibit at the state fair is a really big deal and the MN State Fair is one of the largest state fairs in the country, so my head is spinning.

On Sunday 29 I will be doing live flame-working demos throughout the day, intermixed with occasional interviews and work on my sculpture pieces and jewelry. I am excited to get to share my process with everyone and I will also have work for sale at the state fair in the marketplace. Botanical Fantasies (pictured above) is also on exhibit at the fair at the Fine Arts Building in the Studio: Here gallery.

I have the bees’ approval! My recent work has focused on the symbiotic relationship between humans and bees. Inspired by a bee that kept photo bombing (above left) when I was taking pictures of my piece, Botanical Fantasies, I began researching bees and hives. I have always been amazed at the architectural beauty and stability of bee hives. I have enjoyed exploring a variety of methods of using glass to create bee hives, honey drippers, honey pots and vases to remind us of the importance of these small creatures to our own lives. We need to take care of them, because they help feed us. Our lives depend on them and their lives depend on us!

My work, including honey pots, honey drippers, jewelry, sculptures, vases and more, are available for purchase through Vandalia Glassworks (https://vandaliaglassworks.com/collections/all1?gf_260331=April%20Malphurs) where I work on my blown glass pieces, at the fair at the FOCI booth in the marketplace or by commission at aprilmalphurs.com

I hope to see you at the fair!

April Malphurs is a 2021 recipient of a Creative Support for Individuals from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts & cultural heritage fund.