Your health and the health of our staff is a top priority during the Covid-19 pandemic. Classes that can safely take place with social distancing are being offered with limited enrollment. Students need to bring a mask and hand sanitizer to class. You may contact us at 319-288-0047 with any questions before registering for a class.


Instructor: Tim Blair

Application Fee (non-refundable):$20.00 (required)

WHO: One emerging or beginning glass blower looking to focus on creative exploration and inner reflection in a quiet rural setting.

  • 21 years and older
  • Has a passion for blowing glass
  • Able to follow directions and accept constructive criticism
  • Can work in a hot environment

WHEN: Mentorship starts Sunday May 15th with a final exhibit on Friday May 27th at the Villages Folk School annual Memorial Day Weekend BBQ.  Ending Saturday May 28th.

DEADLINE: Application deadline is 9am CST on April 21st. Selected participant will be announced April 22nd.

TUITION: Tuition and material fee is paid in full with no expense to the selected participant.

HOUSING: Lodging is provided during the duration of the mentorship, but you will need to provide your own transportation and meals.

NOTE: Interaction with the small rural community is a must. There will be a speaking engagement at the local high school and an offering of public studio hours where you can share your creative journey and abilities with the public. 

Villages Folk School's Creative Escape program brings together Van Buren County's seasoned artisans with emerging and upcoming artists to help preserve traditional arts through hands-on learning. Selected participants will retreat to a cabin along the Des Moines River in a quaint historic village as they unplug from the world and expand their creative talents in a nearby artisan studio.

Folk school artisan, Tim Blair, opens his personal glass blowing studio to one selected participant for a two week mentorship program with a focus on creative exploration and inner reflection. This program boasts a unique perspective for a budding artist as there are no classrooms, the participant will be working one-on-one in his hot studio. In addition to daily supervision/instruction four days a week, the participant will be mentored on workflow in the workspace, how to share your craft with others, and the important role that an artisan plays in a rural community.

The inspiring and relaxing atmosphere of scenic Van Buren County, Iowa is and will continue to be a haven for creative beings.

REMINDER: Applicant needs to be a budding or beginning glass blower. Those with advanced experience will not be considered. You can have other artistic endeavors or this could be your first creative adventure. 

TO APPLY: simply click "Apply Today" and complete the form to follow. Then click Submit with your $20 application fee. Application fees are non-refundable and 100% of them support the mentorship program.  Applications will be accepted March 25th through April 21st. The selected participant will be notified/announced on April 22nd. 

Apply Today