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Casper Artist Featured In Lander Chapel

A glass designer from Casper will fill windows in a private chapel above Lander and she’ll look to the Saints for help.

Ktwo radio’s,  Karen Snyder,  talks with Janet Zambai of J Cat Glass about her latest project…

“A lot of people look at glass as a craft but glass is a lot more challenging to work with then just painting a painting on a canvas.” Glass artist Janet Zambai knows about the play of light through glass.

If you’ve ever looked up in The Plains hotel in Cheyenne or the Nobel Hotel in Lander you may have had the pleasure of catching light as it passes through one of her creations.

“With glass you have to think about if your going to have light behind the window, where the piece is going to be, what’s behind it whats in front of it, what the lighting is gonna be,” Zambai says.

Working from her studio in Casper Zambai creates glass installations for public and private spaces across the state.  Right now she’s working through all those questions as she creates over 30 stained glass windows for a private chapel seated above Lander.

“I was contacted by a designer, Betty Burke, out of Colorado, and she had done a web search and she found my website on the Internet and had me do a couple of pieces for the clients house in Cheyenne. When they decided to build this house in Lander she contacted me again about doing all the windows for the Chapel. The designer pulled some images of saints off the Internet but none of them were the right style, they were looking up or down they weren’t exactly what I was looking for. I just couldn’t get enough information out of them and I didn’t want to copy what someone else had done.”

One of the first things she did was to pull together models for a photo shoot giving her real life images to work from.  “And I’m actually kind of free to do whatever I want design wise and techniques I can kind of incorporate some of my own.  Most of the pieces all the figures are all painted and they’re painted with a special glass paint and then fired in.”

Her first couple pieces are coming together and she says she’ll visit the chapel to check her templates and make sure the sizes are perfect.  She says this job is more complex than any she’ done before requiring a lot more experimentation with color and technique.  So that work will continue along with building her relationship with the saints.

“Its actually really interesting to me because the more I know about them the better I can do with them. The first picture I did the first saint drawing I met with the designer and showed her my drawings and the glass samples of what I was gonna do and she was really excited and she goes ‘Oh its wonderful’. So, now shes just kind of let me do whatever I want to do with it. And she says “Just trust the saints they’ll be with you and you’ll come up with what they want you to do for them.”

Zambai will spend this holiday time in close proximity to her angels, cherubs and saints.  She says she expects to have this project completed by next summer.

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