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Fayette County Artist of the Month has clear vision of work

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Mark Hofmann | Trib Total Media
Diane Gambassi of Pittsburgh is the November Artist of the Month at the Fayette County Law Library, where her various glass creations are on display.

A Pittsburgh woman’s love of glass art is on display at the Fayette County Law Library as she’s the November Fayette County Artist of the Month.

Diane Gambassi said she has been making decorative items since she was 3, making holiday decorations with her mother. At the age of 8, she was making beaded necklaces.

But she didn’t get into glass art until she saw it broken.

“I had a huge, old antique stained-glass window in my living room,” Gambassi said, adding that she heard a crash and went to find that antique window broken on her living room floor. “I just decided to learn how to do stained glass.”

Gambassi has been working with glass for the past 22 years, and not just doing stained glass, but fused glass art, glass jewelry, glass wall vases, beveled glass art and even stamps sealed in glass as art, which she said is very popular.

Her stamp art came out of her love of ballet and when the Postal Service released a series of ballet stamps, Gambassi purchased the stamps, but wanted to do more with them, so she sealed the stamp in glass and made a pin out of it.

“I just made it for myself, but it snowballed from there,” Gambassi said as her pin got the attention of people and then the pins started selling out at shows and it caused her to have a greater interest in the art of stamps, especially ones from Europe. “I take about a thousand to shows.”

She said her treasurers in glass are for sale and she even does commission work with the stamp if someone has a favorite stamp they would like to see set in glass as a pin or necklace or any other creative item Gambassi can imagine.

Gambassi, who is a part-time English teacher, said working with glass is a dirty, intense process, but she said working with glass makes the time go by and yields a great and beautiful reward.

“When I clean and polish the glass and look at it and I say, ‘Oh, my gosh; it’s really pretty!’ ” Gambassi said. “When you make something, it’s instant satisfaction.”

Those interested in purchasing any of Gambassi’s treasures in glass can do so by contacting her at [email protected] or 412-431-8388.

Gambassi’s work will be on display at the Fayette County Law Library located on the second floor of the Fayette County Courthouse at 61 E. Main St., Uniontown.

Admission is free. The library is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.

Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media.

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