Glassblower Art Ciccotti is one of the featured artists for Saturday’s Ames Artists’ Studio Tour, a free event that will feature 11 Story County artists in their studios. 

Ciccotti owns Ciccotti Art Glass, 2306 258th St., southwest of Ames in the unincorporated community of Napier. He and his wife Paula have been busy filling orders and attending weekend art festivals in the Midwest, including the recent 50th annual Octagon Art Festival. 

Ciccotti is a mostly self-taught glassblower and has been practicing his craft since learning it in a student-run organization at Iowa State, where he graduated in 1987. 

He uses variety of interesting tools, like a hand-held compressed air machine called a sophietta, shears for cutting the hot glass, a carbon-fiber pad to help shape, giant tweezer-shaped tools called jacks that help shape the hot glass, hollow pipes that attach to the glass for blowing and solid punti sticks that

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One of the simplest ways to do that is to satisfy the artist one-on-one. Opening receptions are the perfect locations to satisfy artists and communicate with them about their work. Ask about their influences, their artistic journey, and what the work means to them. Nonetheless, if you can’t make it to considered one of these events, most … Read More

NORTHAMPTON — Two years ago, the Paradise City Arts Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary: a quarter-century of some 250 artists gathering twice a year to display their work at the Three County Fairgrounds in Northampton.

From painting to sculpture to photography, and from ceramics to furniture to clothing and jewelry, the festival since 1994 had been a popular and well-known forum for displaying a huge range of work by artists from the Northeast and other parts of the country.

Then COVID-19 arrived and threw a wrench in the works, and Paradise City had to retreat to a virtual format for its last three sessions, in spring and fall of 2020 and again this past spring.

Now the arts festival is returning for another in-person showing, Oct. 9-11, Saturday to Monday, at the county fairgrounds, with safety protocols in place — including some adjustments for spacing — but essentially in

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