John Rais has been engaged in the field of metalsmithing, sculpture, and object design all his adult life. He has a BFA in Sculpture from Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, and an MFA in Metalsmithing from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI in 1998. From there, he was the Department Head of Blacksmithing at Peters Valley Craft Education Center in Layton, NJ. John has maintained his own studio business since 1998, where he creates one of-a-kind furniture, sculpture and, architectural metal work. He is perhaps best know for his fire screens, which bring visual strength and warmth to any space. John’s work is shown, commissioned and, collected internationally, including solo shows at the National Ornamental Metals Museum and Purchase College. He has designed and created works for a Frank Lloyd Wright home, Louis Kahn home, and many others. His unique stylistic blend of early techniques and modern design applications has set him apart from other metal studios. His work has been featured on the pages of Departures magazine, Ritz-Carlton magazine, Metalsmith, American Craft magazine, and many others as well as several books. John has also taught at many universities and schools including Penland School of Crafts, New England School of Metalwork, and SUNY New Paltz. He has been a visiting artist at Virginia Commonwealth University, Millersville University, The College for Creative Studies, and Kutztown University. John was a Senior Lecturer of Crafts at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia (2004-2006). In the spring of 2006 he was awarded an Arts/ Industry Residency at the prestigious John Michael Kohler Art Center in Wisconsin, and in the fall of 2007 he was artist in residence in applied design at Purchase College in NY, where he also taught a master’s class in applied design. John currently has his home and studio in Shelburne, Massachusetts.
Describe your organization or gallery
I am also on the board of directors of an international metal arts org call SNAG, The Society of North American Goldsmiths. It is a progressive organization for artists, designers, jewelers, and metalsmiths. We publish a magazine called Metalsmith which can be found in Barns and Noble and Borders Books.
The Society of North American Goldsmiths supports and advances the professional practice of artists, designers, jewelers and metalsmiths. Through education, innovation, and leadership, SNAG provides access to a vibrant and passionate community.