South County has monsters and they are awesome. Painted all kinds of fantastic colors, they have spots and wild eyes and even antennae shooting up from their heads. They stare back from brightly lit windows at the Glass Station on Main Street in Wakefield and, although scary at first brush, their mission here is all good.
Self-trained glass blower Jen Nauck had been searching for a new project to involve kids. Last Christmas, the spirit of gift giving from Glass Station owner Eben Horton’s son, Campbell, gave rise to the idea of letting children draw their own monsters and bringing the drawings to the studio. The children would also choose a local charity. Each month one drawing would be chosen and that paper monster would come to life in their studio. At the end of the year, Jen and Eben would auction off the 12 monsters, with all proceeds going directly to each chosen charity. And so began the Monthly Monster Melt.
It’s a brilliant plan; to let children be in charge, to produce on paper what they see in their minds, then talk with their parents about the idea of philanthropy as see their art come to life in glass. Jen and Eben are creating positive, permanent memories of art and charity; often new ideas for young kids. January’s winner, Sadie Lang, created a monster from the land of Zoza because logically, “Zoza is where monsters live.” Sadie generously chose the RI Food Bank as her charity.
Winners of each month’s contest will be called to let them know the great news and Eben will announce on the Glass Station’s Facebook page when the newest glass monster will be born. In line with their goals of community involvement and excitement for the arts, people are encouraged to visit the studio and watch them work.