UROBOROS FINDS A NEW HOME IN THE NEW YEAR
Just prior to the close of this year of discontent in our treasured art glass industry, I am delighted to announce that a sale of Uroboros Glass’ name, equipment, technology and formulas has been completed, and that the future of its many iconic products is now secured. All current Uroboros colors and product lines, from System 96 sheet and frit, and FX90 fusible products, to the traditional Art Glass multi-colored mottles, textures and contracted custom produced glass products are expected to be available again in the months ahead.
The new owner is the experienced colored glass tile manufacturer Oceanside Glasstile (OGT), headquartered in Carlsbad, California. With 25 years of experience in decorative glass tile design and manufacturing, the OGT owners and crew have a proven track record of developing and dependably supplying aesthetically superior, responsibly made colored glass products.
I have always felt that the true value of an art glass product is about more than just producing acceptable physical properties. In my book, excellence in visual and aesthetic properties is the ultimate goal of the art glass production effort. Having known the founders of OGT since its inception almost 25 years ago, I know their company culture embodies the unusual combination of aesthetic understanding and a well-grounded, responsible manufacturing ethic. These are the qualities I know are required to produce colored glass products that rise to the artistic level. Although there were other credible candidates who sought to acquire Uroboros and its technology in recent months, it was this aspect of the OGT culture that put them in the winning seat for me.
I have visited the OGT Tijuana facility and can personally attest to seeing a very clean state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in a new industrial neighborhood of modern electronic, automotive and aerospace manufacturing facilities. It is staffed with well trained, enthusiastic professionals who manage a responsibly equipped production process that is also remarkably supportive of its employees, their families, and their community. The opportunity for synergistic developments from this unique technical and creative collaboration is not only exciting, but truly unmatched in the history of our industry.
In the next few months production at Uroboros in Portland will shut down one department at a time to prepare equipment for the move. As each department is moved to the OGT facility it will start up again as soon as practical. Initial production will focus on items out of stock the longest and most in demand. I and several long term Uroboros employees will be closely involved with the start-up of Uroboros production in Mexico, and together we are going to give it our best effort to ensure that product quality does not suffer from the move.
The current timetable, subject to change, includes discontinuing sheet production in Portland by Feb 1st, and restarting in Mexico the first week of May, only a three month gap. Sheet products will be sold from our considerable inventories in Portland until end of April, and then remaining inventories and new production will be purchasable from Uroboros/OGT starting mid-May. Frit, stringer, noodle, rods and other accessory items will be produced in Portland from remaining supplies until early May, and thereafter remaining inventories and new production will by purchasable from Uroboros/OGT starting in early June, only a one month gap.
Current Uroboros distributors are encouraged to contact firstname.lastname@example.org for initial product inquiries and orders. This is particularly true for items that are no longer available in Portland, since those will be the first produced at the new location. I’m sure I haven’t been able to answer all your questions, but as things develop we will provide updates. In the meantime, if you have a job to quote or other specific concerns about timing and product availability, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
It has been a great 44 years of art glass production here in Portland. We, the craftspeople at Uroboros, have learned much from you about the often subtle visual properties that you and your customers sought in art glass. We consider ourselves lucky to have been intimately involved in so many superb art projects. It has been an educational, exciting, and rewarding experience in arts based manufacturing, combining old-world craftsmanship with modern technology. This has indeed been a year of unprecedented changes to our industry, but I and several other long-timers at Uroboros will continue to be involved with the Uroboros brand, and we do look forward to seeing and working with you in our new capacities in the future.
Happy Holidays to all,
Founder and President, Uroboros Glass