South G Street Studio Spotlight
Written by ARey Photography
Photos by ARey Photography
Mr Gray (Scott Rosinski), Ben David (Ben David Isikoff), Seth Jones
If Humboldt county is a magnet, then I am steel. This lush, serene, and laid-back redwood paradise,
specifically Arcata, California, has been the home of Mr Gray’s (Scott Rosinski) studio for six years. His
signature leaf style has produced some of the most recognizable work in the functional glassblowing industry.
If it’s dicro, green or multicolored and looks smokable, it is a design by the masterfully-talented Mr. Gray. His
chill demeanor and smile makes him an easy-going person to know. With his experience and talent, Scott has
become a major player and standout glass artist willing to share his expertise with aspiring go-getters.
Even though his crew has changed in the past years, he has managed to surround himself with young
talent that help him with incredibly large and detailed collaborative projects. His current partners-in-crime
include Ben David Isikoff and Seth Jones, who have lent a solid backbone to the everyday operation of the
studio. Ben started as Scott’s apprentice and has come into his own with a growth in both style and technique.
His experience and calm interaction with collaborating artists has been vital in providing a necessary
assistance on complex and challenging endeavors. Seth, Scott’s assistant is young, talented and eager to
pursue the knowledge of the craft with energy and desire. He is sharp and not afraid of helping out in any way
he can. Learning from his mentor is providing a path for growth and success.
So the next time you see a wooden crate with “MADE IN HUMBOLDT” branded on it, expect to see a
concerted effort of talent, experience and nuggetry guaranteed to wow your imagination and smoking
pleasure. My stay was short, but filled with adventure. The visits with artists, friends and the fresh environment
helped my soul feel the gifts of both nature and friendship. Until my inevitable return to the Northern California
wonderland, may the majestic trees continue to grow and produce more talent.
Where are you from and when did you to start blowing glass?
I started blowing glass out of Portland, Maine in 2000.
Who were your major influences and why?
Early on I was influenced by Jason Lee, Steve Gelb, Mike Fro, and Bob Snodgrass for their innovative
technique and shaping aesthetic. Robert Mickelsen, Mike Plane, Jared Delong, and Daniel Benway were also
big influences because of their ability to push the medium, bringing glass to a whole new plateau.
What is the story behind your glass blowing name, “Mr. Gray”?
I was given the name when I used to own a glass shop in Gray, Maine back in 2005.
Could you describe the elements of your distinctive style?
Elements of nature are refined and simplified while being represented through repetitive form in my work. The
“leaf”, a reminder to us all of the importance of growth; and the “nuggetry” to appreciate the ornate forms of
nature. I try to create an aesthetic, all in its own, that mirrors perfection in a plant.
How long have you been at your current location and what changes have there been since then?
I moved in with Tristan Hodges back in 2008 then bought the ventilation and lease from Dan Benway. We
gutted the tables and built new benches. It’s a constant process upgrading and remodeling to dial everything
What is it like being part of Humboldt’s glassblowers’ scene?
The scene here is flourishing. There is a great sense of community and camaraderie. I feel blessed to be a
part of it and look forward to the future.
You have been part of some epic collaborations. Which one has been the most challenging
The planning that went into the creation of “The Skull” made it by far the most work and time I’ve put into any
one piece. Even so, my contribution was only a fraction of the total time put in by all the artists. The amount of
engineering and time Scott Deppe, the Mothership team, and other artists put in was what made the piece
possible. It was just a formless idea without the technology, hard work, and perseverance of all involved.
Who have you collaborated the most with and what was your favorite piece?
That’s not easy to answer. I collaborate with a lot of people and put out a lot of pieces. The most probably are
done with Ben David. “The Skull” is easily my favorite followed by all the Banjo collabs I have done, some with
the assistance of Ben. You should check out Ben’s Snapchat to see what he’s up to, @beenchai.
Of all the events you attend each year, which is your favorite and why?
I like PipeMasters a lot. Seattle is fun and the event is about making glass and supporting a community hub
and great resource, The Boro School. Good people and good food there; specifically, chicken.
When mentoring your assistants, what do you try to instill in them?
Keep your finger on the pulse and do work. But above all, Snapchat a lot and do research and development
Seth Jones – Assistant