The Queue: Chevonne Ariss
The Queue: Chevonne Ariss
Chevonne Ariss gives listeners a window into stained glass.
A glaring gap in the podcast landscape inspired Portland, Oregon–based Chevonne Ariss to start Cracked with Chevonne Ariss, a show devoted entirely to stained glass. Over the past four seasons, Ariss has brought in artists, hobbyists, and conservators from all over the world to discuss their techniques, materials, tools, business tips, and influences in cheery, informal conversations. Artists featured on Cracked create stunning glass art in a dizzying array of aesthetics and forms. Ariss herself is an accomplished stained glass artist: she has depicted in stained glass 118 of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn, and has installed large-scale work in homes and businesses. Her podcast is featured in “New Releases” in the Fall 2023 issue of American Craft.
How do you describe your work or practice in 50 words or less?
My practice is unique—not only am I a stained glass artist, I also host the podcast Cracked with Chevonne Ariss, where I interview a different artist each episode. I’m constantly trying to find the balance between nurturing my own journey and promoting and celebrating others.
Tell us about the first piece of stained glass that captivated you. What about it drew you in?
I can’t recall any early impactful stained glass memories. The first piece that really moved me was the first piece I made. I loved all the steps and was so proud of it. I knew right away glass was something I would dedicate a lifetime of energy towards.
How did you come to podcasting? What makes someone an interesting guest?
When I started Cracked, there wasn’t a podcast yet specifically for modern stained glass, and I knew that there was an audience for it based on the community I had built on social media. The incredible work I was seeing needed to be talked about! Interesting guests are prepared, honest, do not shy away from vulnerability, and are willing to go deep. Humor and good storytelling are huge added bonuses. Cracked actually isn’t entirely about glass—it’s about the human experience that even non-glass-artists can relate to.
What are your favorite podcasts, and why?
Heavyweight with Jonathan Goldstein for the most incredible storytelling; my forever GOAT Radiolab for continued learning; and I am also really loving The Mel Robbins Podcast for a little self-motivation and love. My guilty pleasure is Bitch Sesh for some guaranteed chuckles.
If you could have work from any contemporary stained glass artist for your home or studio, whose would it be and why?
This is the most difficult question to answer but I narrowed it down to two: Neile Cooper because she was my first favorite glass artist and first guest on Cracked, and Judith Schaechter because her technique is revolutionary and her work is otherworldly.
Which craft artists, exhibitions, or projects do you think the world should know about, and why?
I’ll be doing a joint presentation with Ted Ellison—another glass superstar I admire—at the Stained Glass Association of America’s annual conference on September 30 in Buffalo, New York. It’s on how to navigate a larger commission, which is the second part of a previous Cracked episode!