Sean Egan Irish Glass Artist | Waterford Crystal to Barack Obama
Sean Egan is a Master Engraver, Glass Artist, and Designer with over 40 years of experience in glass art, beginning his apprenticeship with Waterford Crystal in 1974. In 2009 Sean opened Sean Egan Art Glass in Waterford, working as a freelance glass artist and designer. Sean is passionate about his work and his aim is to keep the age-old skill of hand engraving on crystal alive, a craft that has been practiced in Waterford since the 1700s. Using tiny copper wheels, Sean engraves his designs on blank crystal, which is the perfect medium for the elegant beauty of engraving. It is like an optical illusion and has a unique 3D effect on glass. Each touch on the wheel brings to life an image that seems frozen within the crystal. All his artwork is designed and handcrafted by Sean in his studio, and no two pieces are exactly the same. “As a freelance engraver, I take my inspiration for my designs from everything around me”. He is renowned for his vivid depictions of nature, particularly marine life and wildlife, landscapes, and historical monuments, as well as Celtic and oriental themes.
Sean Egan Art Glass is located in the award-winning Bishop’s Palace Museum in the Viking Triangle Quarter of Waterford City. His studio and shop are located in the reception area of the museum and there is no charge to come and see Sean at work. He specializes in high-end luxury gifts, bespoke hand engraved presentation pieces, awards, sports trophies, family crests, and logos, all handcrafted to perfection.
He will be more than happy to provide a free consultation to create that special gift or presentation piece to suit any occasion. “I can depict anything on glass. I work closely with my clients and won’t begin to engrave until I am happy that I understand exactly what they want, and put everything into achieving perfection for them”. In his shop, there is a unique selection of glass giftware handcrafted and designed by Sean to suit every pocket.
Sean has a prodigious output of work to his credit and it is much sought after for its inspirational and dedicated themes and sheer quality of craftsmanship. As well as creating two 9/11 memorial sculptures, Sean has been commissioned to do many presentation pieces both here in Ireland and abroad.
In 2016 he was commissioned by the Boston Marathon Tribute Memorial Group to create two memorial sculptures, the first of which commemorates all the victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and a second one to pay tribute to MIT Police Officer Sean Collier, who was killed in the line of duty in the manhunt following the bombing. Both sculptures were presented to Mayor Marty Walsh in a moving ceremony held in Boston on the third anniversary of the Boston bombing. The first sculpture in memory of the bombing victims is now on display at City Hall in Boston and Officer Collier’s sculpture is now on display at MIT Boston.
In 2013 Sean had the great honor of designing and crafting the stunning piece, entitled “The Shamrock Bowl”, which was presented to President Barack Obama by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny as part of the traditional presentation of Irish shamrock at the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations held in the White House each year. It was an honor to be chosen, Utilising his keen eye for detail and creative flair, Sean’s outline mainly depicts the emigration story of the Irish to America and features a famine ship, and interweaved Celtic knot, and two harps surrounded by an engraved shamrock.
His advice to anyone starting a business is to believe in yourself and see it through, Covid 19 has stopped me from working in the museum that’s where my studio is, so now I set up at my home and working from home.
Sean Egan has recently joined the ranks of the Crafters of Ireland along with a lineup of other talented artists, crafters, and designers.