WRAL.com at the State Fair

Fancy and Fanciful Glass

Posted October 19, 2007

Last year in a roundup I mentioned that Curtis Cecil, an artist in the Village of Yesteryear, had eyeballs for sale. (He works with glass and makes marbles.) This year when I went to the Village of Yesteryear, I noticed he had a few less eyeballs but is now selling delicate glass Venus Flytraps with small detailed glass flies. Clearly this is a guy to talk to!

Curtis, of High Point, is in his third year at the Village of Yesteryear. The Venus Flytraps are new this year. "Since they are indigenous to North Carolina, I thought they'd be a good addition," he said. "And they're certainly attracting a lot of attention." They are certainly amazing to look at, with a lot of detail, but they're probably not going to become his primary line -- Curtis says that hummingbirds and dolphins are still his most popular items.

The eyeballs were created in response to a contest, but Curtis has actually been interested in glass since 1979, in his high school chemistry class. He started working glass in 1980, and is now a full-time professional. Even as he talked to me, he sat in his chair working glass. The glass softens at 1150 degrees, he told me, but the torch he was working with was burning at 2500 degrees.

If you get a chance this final weekend of the Fair, go visit Curtis in the Village of Yesteryear. In a building known for its delicate arts, lace and pottery, the eyeballs and Flytraps really stand out!

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