With a week to go before the June 30th deadline for applications, the must-discussed help-wanted position of hotshop starter at the Museum of Glass is still unfilled. The person doing the hiring says he is eagerly accepting applications to fill the position being vacated when Alex Stisser returns to rural Illinois after 8 years.
“I’ve heard a ton of people say they are interested,” Benjamin Cobb, hotshop manager and lead gaffer told the GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet in an exclusive interview. “But at this point we only have a handful of completed application forms.”
“I expect a last-minute surge of applications to roll in next week,” says Cobb, who just returned from the Louisville GAS Conference where he says there was no shortage of people who expressed interest. “A couple people said they were interested but didn’t think they would have a chance,” he added. “My advice to them is: you never know until you apply.”
Cobb points out that when the current team was hired by “mentor and manager” Charlie Parriott, “myself, Alex Stisser, and Gabe Feenan were very green and we all took a chance on it. We were lucky enough to be hired by someone like Parriott, who has been wonderful.”
Asked for what qualifications he is looking for in the new hotshop starter, Cobb says it all will come down to compatibility. “We’re looking for the right fit, the right chemisty,” he says. A “certain amount of level-headedness”is required since the hotshop team regularly works with big names not just in the field of glass but in the larger contemporary art world. Case in point is Lynda Benglis who recently visited and made work at the Museum of Glass hotshop. “You can’t be intimidated,” says Cobb. “You might be a little bit worried at first, but you’re often surprised to find out they’re just people, and it’s a pleasure to work with them.”
Cobb sees two possible scenarios: either they hire someone who comes to the job with all the right qualifications to immediately take on the responsibilities of the job, or they go with someone a little more green who will grow into the position. “It’s all about the chemistry,” he says. “And the willingness to be flexible and work as an honest-to-God team.”
Cobb says the job requires an awareness of etiquette suitable for an audience, which means turning the music down and watching the lyrics carefully if you like hip-hop music. But most importantly is an appetite for work, which can sometimes be intense.
“Sometimes we’re pushed to pull some long days and make some heavy stuff,” says Cobb. “You need to flexible, have an accommodating attitude, and realize, we’re a museum and not just a hot shop. You’ll have to participate in meetings and have interactions with the staff.”
Download the official application form and mail it in to:Museum of Glass Attn: HR 1801 Dock Street Tacoma, WA 98402-3217