Bob Snodgrass

American lampworker
Bob Snodgrass, Oregon DFO 2019 (Photo by Connor McHugh/Pyroscopic)
Bob Snodgrass blowing glass in his VW Bus at DFO in Oregon 2019. (Photo by Connor McHugh/PYROSCOPIC)

Bob Snodgrass is an American lampworker known for his contributions to the art of glass pipe-making and glass art. He began lampworking in 1971 while learning from and working with Chuck Murphy for a few years. [1][2]

Bob purchased his first torch in 1974 while living in Independence, Missouri where he began to hone his craft over the next several years. He moved back to Ohio and a few other states selling his work at local arts & crafts festivals, flea markets and street fairs. In 1986 Bob, his wife and their youngest child moved into a bus and hit the road. They worked their way around the country doing all types of festivals and shows. On Easter weekend in 1987 Bob attended his first Grateful Dead show at Irvine. “I saw the crowd burst into dancing and thought this was so tribal I want to be part of this.” From there Bob started following the Dead on tour and his craft quickly became sought after. Eventually they settled in Eugene, Oregon.[3][4]

Snodgrass is credited with having invented (by accident, he says) color changing glass, a type of borosilicate glass mixed (fumed) with gold and/or silver, which changes colors as the dark resin builds up on the inside of the glass. He founded the Eugene Glass School.[5]

The documentary film Degenerate Art depicts the glass subculture that Snodgrass helped to create. He has been called the “Godfather of glass.”[6][7][8]


Snodgrass taught in Oregon many younger artists how to create functional glass art, including Jason Harris of Jerome Baker Designs, who gained notoriety throughout the 1990s on the U.S. West Coast for his high quality glass bongs and pipes. Jerome Baker Designs had its assets seized during Operation Pipe Dreams, a federal operation to prosecute glass blowers in the United States.[9] After legalization, Jerome Baker Designs began picking up steam again, ultimately creating the world’s largest bong at 24-feet high and 800 pounds.

Snodgrass’s apprentices also went on to teach many other famous glassblowers.[10]


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  1. ^ .mw-parser-output cite.citation{font-style:inherit;word-wrap:break-word}.mw-parser-output .citation q{quotes:”””””””‘””‘”}.mw-parser-output .citation:target{background-color:rgba(0,127,255,0.133)}.mw-parser-output a{background:url(“//”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-free a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output a,.mw-parser-output a{background:url(“//”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-limited a,body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-registration a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output a{background:url(“//”)right 0.1em center/9px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .id-lock-subscription a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .cs1-ws-icon a{background:url(“//”)right 0.1em center/12px no-repeat}body:not(.skin-timeless):not(.skin-minerva) .mw-parser-output .cs1-ws-icon a{background-size:contain}.mw-parser-output .cs1-code{color:inherit;background:inherit;border:none;padding:inherit}.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{display:none;color:#d33}.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error{color:#d33}.mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{display:none;color:#2C882D;margin-left:0.3em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-format{font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left{padding-left:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right{padding-right:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .citation .mw-selflink{font-weight:inherit} .mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{color:#18911F} .mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error, .mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{color:#f8a397}@media(prefers-color-scheme:dark){ .mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error, .mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{color:#f8a397} .mw-parser-output .cs1-maint{color:#18911F}}“The Guy Who Invented the Bong Lives in White Center and Might Lose His House”. The Stranger. May 17, 2017. Retrieved January 31, 2018.
  2. ^ Bienenstock, David (2017-10-24). “The ‘Wicked Glass’ Story: A Cross-Country Journey Inspired by Snodgrass, Kerouac, and Cannabis”. Leafly. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  3. ^ Heinrich, Will (2017-04-27). “6 Galleries to Visit Now in TriBeCa, SoHo and the West Village”. The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  4. ^ “Snodgrass Family Glass”. Retrieved 2017-07-28.
  5. ^ “The Glass Menagerie”. Archived from the original on 2018-02-01. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  6. ^ Vankin, Deborah. “Don’t worry, Mom, it’s not a bong; it’s art”. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  7. ^ Paumgarten, Nick (2017-05-08). “Inside the Bong Show”. The New Yorker. ISSN 0028-792X. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  8. ^ Notman, Alex (2014-06-26). “The Glass Menagerie”. Eugene Weekly. Archived from the original on 2018-02-01. Retrieved 2018-01-31.
  9. ^ “The Feds Stripped Me Of My Company In Operation Pipe Dreams. Here’s How I Rebuilt It”. hightimes.
  10. ^ “Renowned glassblowing artists will try to make 24-foot-high bong in Seattle”. seattletimes.

External links[edit]


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