Odyssey Medal

James R. Hayes

James HayesJames Hayes owns and operates the James Hayes Art Glass Company in his hometown of Pine Bluff. He has gained a reputation for creativity and flair in his designs of bowls, plates, vases, chandeliers, Christmas ornaments and other blown glass works.

Hayes received an art degree from Hendrix College in 1988. Three months later he discovered glassblowing at the Arkansas Arts Center Museum School. He has studied glassblowing in Murano, Italy; Columbus, Ohio; and the Pilchuck Glass School near Seattle, Wash.

Hayes says of his work, “I use nature, chance and my emotions as inspiration for my art glass. My art is playful, adventurous, colorful and distinctive. When I make something I always begin with the end in mind. However, during the glassmaking process the design can change or happy little accidents can occur.”

Hayes has received an invitation from the White House to design a Christmas tree ornament. He has been featured in "High Profile" in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, KHTV’s “Everyone has a Story,” Southern Living, and has appeared on the cover of At Home in Arkansas magazine.

In 2010, his love of Hendrix inspired him to create a chandelier for the new Student Life and Technology Center. He personally installed the chandelier, one piece at a time, working for four hours to install the 220-piece sculpture.