Evening light shows off the glass art John Tess created for Portland's Muse apartment complex.

Evening light shows off the glass art John Tess created for Portland’s Muse apartment complex.

Cultural Trust Treasurer and Board Member John Tess, the president of nationally recognized historic preservation consulting firm Heritage Consulting Group, is also a fused glass artist.

His first project was the 70-piece glass firewall in the lobby of the Portland Center Stage Armory. His latest project is two installations at Portland’s new Muse apartment building at the corner of Northwest 19th and Overton. 

A collaboration with fellow glass artist Bonnie Celeste, the installations play off the whimsical name of the building.

According to John, the pieces are incorporated into the design of the building in a functional way while also adding to the urban fabric of the city.

The first piece features 12 16-foot panels incorporating 180 pieces of glass that anchor the corner of the building. John says the appearance is “ever-changing based on the vantage point, time of day and lighting. It is meant to be viewed from the inside or out.”

John describes the piece as an urban puzzle incorporated into the building. “It is meant to be fun, calming and sophisticated.”

The second installation will include 18 flag poles, 25 to 38 feet tall, partially wrapped by 90 glass pieces as part of a bamboo garden. The poles will sway with the wind, creating what he calls an “urban jungle.”