Cal State Fullerton’s College of the Arts is home to one of the few locations where students can pursue studies and a fine arts degree with a concentration in glass. This unique program is run by Titan alumni and new faculty member, Hiromi Takizawa. Professor Takizawa earned her BA and MA in Glass from CSUF, completed her MFA in Craft and Materials Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University, and has been featured artist in galleries across the United States.
While she grew up in the world of ceramics and other arts, Professor Takizawa’s fascination with glass began when she stepped into the glass studio at Santa Ana College. Takizawa recalls that “During my one year study abroad, I knew I wanted to go into the arts. I happened to walk into a ceramics and glass studio in community college and that was it… Glass was something new, so I took a class and I knew right away that this was something I wanted to do.” After her studies in Orange County, she awarded her with emerging artist awards and top prizes for innovative work in glass. In 2007, her work was featured at Urban Glass in New York where she was selected as Best Graduate MFA Student. The following year, Urban Glass offered her a solo exhibition and her career took off as an artist with other invitations and residencies throughout the country.
Takizawa highlights the reflective, refractive, and transparent quality of glass which attracts her to the art and sets it apart from other art forms. In terms of process, she describes working with glass as “fluid” while working and molding it in its heated state. The history of glass goes back a long time with a variety of traditions for common uses. However, in the United States, the history of glass-making as an artistic medium is new with a fifty-year history. While her training comes from a basis of creating vases and other glassware, the same skills can be used to explore the possibilities for artistic sculptures.
During her time at Cal State Fullerton, Taikizawa looks to Professor Christina Smith as a mentor. She values her time at CSUF as it gave her a place to develop her craft and establish connections with colleagues and faculty members who helped her during her career. Now that she is a teacher at CSUF, it has come full circle. As she teaches the next generation of artists, Takizawa hopes her students will not give up. “There are two different kinds of talents. The first is that you are extremely talented at what you do. The second is that you never give up. I am definitely the second kind. Keep making work and follow your passion.”
For more information on Hiromi Takizawa, check out her website located here!