By Kathy Collins

Timothy Hoffmeister of Brandon is a fantastic glass sculpture artist. Hoffmeister uses his many years of experience as an executive chef to create his glass artwork.

“For the first 15 years of my career, I was an executive chef for many companies. Ice sculpture was a big part of my career. I have created close to 1,000 sculptures in my career. I have had the privilege to compete in ice art competitions sponsored by the American Culinary Federation, the National Ice Carving Association and the Florida Restaurant Association. I scored two silver medals and six bronze medals,” explained Hoffmeister.

Now, Hoffmeister creates glass sculptures. “I use borosilicate glass rods made in America. Using a torch, with a mixture of propane gas and oxygen, I can create enough heat (3,500 degrees) to turn glass into liquid form and manipulate it into what I think the glass wants to be. Sometimes it is a bird, sometimes a flower, and sometimes it is even a crab. Whatever it is that day always seems to put a smile on someone’s face,” said Hoffmeister.

“Glass is the opposite of ice in every possible way. But after many years of creating ice sculptures, I got to the point where I could not work on 300 pound sculptures any more,” said Hoffmeister. “Glass glistens like ice glistens in the light. Glass has also given me the opportunity to work with more colors than in the rainbow.”

Hoffmeister participated in the Winthrop Art Festival this past March. He was a huge hit with his portable studio making his creations right on the festival grounds. “We created the portable studio through a collaboration between an idea I had, the welding skills of my son and fine people at Brandon Glass and Mirror,” said Hoffmeister.

Hoffmeister became interested in glass about two years ago. He took a course at Zen Glass in St. Petersburg and a passion was ignited. While this is not Hoffmeister’s full time job (he works as a food production specialist), he is a devoted artist.

You can get one of Hoffmeister’s inspired creations by contacting him at 892-9758 or via email at meisterglass@gmail.com.