‘From the Slopes of Two Mountains’

  • Courtesy photo Bubble vase detail by Chris and Marianne Lowry.

Volcano Art Center announces “From The Slopes Of Two Mountains,” an art exhibition featuring glass works by Michael Mortara, Misato Mochizuki Mortara, W. Chris Lowry and Marianne J. Lowry. The exhibit will open to the public Jan. 5 and continue through Feb. 10, 2019 at the Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

During the shutdown of the federal government, the national park and VAC will remain as accessible as possible.


An opening reception with the artists is slated for 5-7 p.m. Jan. 5 at the gallery.

The exhibit showcases contemporary and traditional glass techniques created on and inspired by two of Hawaii’s most prominent volcanoes — Kilauea and Haleakala.

Michael and Misato Mortara work from and own the glass studio 2400 Fahrenheit in Volcano, while Chris and Marianne Lowry create from and co-own Hot Island Glass located in Makawao on Maui. Both studios are located in high elevation locations and all four artists cite the unique environments in which they work as a source of inspiration.

The Mortaras have made glass works together for more than 20 years. Originally from Oahu, they opened their studio in Volcano in 2000. Their work is found in private collections worldwide, as well as the collections of the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, the Contemporary Museum of Honolulu, the Four Seasons Hotel, Hilton Hotels and the National Park Service.

“There is something both dramatic and dynamic about the manipulation of a molten mass of glass, such that the process has almost as much appeal for me as the product,” said Mike Mortara. “Hot glass is a medium in constant motion, where balance, timing and rhythm are the essential tools in the process. Once you start, you can’t stop until it’s done.

The Lowrys have created glass work together for nine years. Travel has exposed them to exciting new experiences, but in the end brought them together. They studied glass in Japan, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark and the United States.

In their short career together their work has traveled with collectors around the world, and here at home they have pieces in the collections of the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts and The Honolulu Museum of Art.

Nature has a strong theme in their work, showing up in clean and organic forms or as complex natural patterns.


“My work has a strong personality,” said Chris Lowry. “A piece should grab your attention and then be able to keep it.”

For more information about the featured artists or the exhibit, visit www.volcanoartcenter.org.

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