An incredible opportunity awarded to glass artist Leslie Rowe-Israelson has resulted in some rare glass work that will soon be on display at Pynelogs Art Gallery in Invermere. The recipient of a Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance artist grant, Rowe-Israelson used the funds she received to attend a residency at the  Uroboros Glass Company in Portland, Oregon, one of three glass manufacturers in North America that specialize in warm glass creation.

“It’s really amazing and they only invite six people a year down to the factory to use their glass,” she said.

Rowe-Israelson, who is known for using a rare technique not practised by many of the world’s glass artists, said the experience was invaluable because not only was she able to experiment with new Uroboros glass in innovative ways, but she had access to their large kilns which allowed her to make large scale glass panels depicting the Canadian mountain landscape, all of which will be on display in her upcoming Pynelogs show.

“It’s the most incredibly exciting thing, you’re right in there with the hot glass coming off the layer, and noise, and soot and dirt and glass flying everywhere,” she said.

Rowe-Israelson had applied for the residency a year ahead of time and when it was awarded to her, she wasn’t sure how she was going to afford it.

“I would have found the money somewhere, I would have crawled on my belly to get there,” she said, laughing. “There aren’t many people that get to go there and the artists that do get to go there are world class.”

But once she discovered she had been named as a recipient of a Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance artist grant, her dilemma was solved.

“The Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance has been absolutely incredible helping artists to further and get new and innovative work done because without that you can’t afford to really experiment,” Rowe-Israelson said.

Rowe-Israelson’s glass art show at Pynelogs Art Gallery and Cultural Centre will begin on Wednesday, August 15 with an opening reception at 8 p.m. that will include an informative PowerPoint presentation featuring the work and stories of world class glass artists.

To find out more about Rowe-Israelson’s work, which is also on display at the Canada House Gallery in Banff, visit her website at