Robert Held, MA in Fine Arts (University of Southern California), became head of ceramics at Sheridan College in Ontario. He discovered glassblowing at the Penland School of Crafts and launched Canada’s first college-level hot glass program in 1969. Sheridan’s program produced many skilled Canadian artists and crowned Held as the pioneer of “hot” art glass in Canada.
In 1978, Held opened Skookum Art Glass studio in Calgary, and in 1987 the Robert Held Art Glass studio in Vancouver, since relocated to Parksville, B.C. His award-winning work is held in major collections worldwide. Held wrote the Introduction for Christina Johnson-Dean's The Life and Art of Mary Filer (Mother Tongue 2016), a celebration of one of Canada's foremost glass artists. See Johnson-Dean entry for more info.