Hugh Jenkins and Stephanie Ross are a husband and wife team of glass artists who have been blowing glass on the Big Island of Hawai’i since 1999. After leaving long teaching careers in Honolulu in 2001—Stephanie at Holy Nativity and Hugh at Punahou School—they began collaborating in their home-based studio in Honoka’a on the Big Island. Three years later they established the Big Island Glass Gallery.
Hugh was introduced to glass blowing and the Foundry in Honolulu in 1969. In 1972, he brought glass blowing into the Punahou School art department and continued to teach there until 1998. During summer breaks and
sabbatical leaves, he also taught at Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina. Most recently, Hugh has focused on energy efficiency through the use of alternate and sustainable fuels for glass and other fire arts.
Stephanie Ross earned her BA at California College of Arts and Crafts and her graduate degrees from the University of Hawai’i, Manoa. Beginning in 1975, she taught art to high school and elementary students and then in 1997, she opened her own studio, where she created works on fabric and taught privately. In 1995, she was introduced to glass and a year later she began collaborating with her husband, Hugh.
In their glass art, Hugh and Stephanie work in response to their surroundings, reflecting the ever-changing water, volcano, forest, landscape, and climate of the Big Island. Today, Hugh and Stephanie are considered to be national leaders in the use of renewable energy, with reclaimed cooking oil as their main fuel for melting glass.
Visit the website www.bigislandglass.com for more information on their collaborative work.