August 31, 2013 in Washington Voices


Amy Galbavy’s mosaic touch transforms stone and concrete
Jennifer Larue
Tyler Tjomsland photoBuy this photo

Amy Galbavy poses for a portrait with some of her glass art on Monday, at her home in Spokane.
(Full-size photo)(All photos)


Art on Broadway will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 14. at 807 N. Argonne Road, at the corner of Broadway and Argonne.

New additions to the event will include a wine and beer garden by Vintage Vines, who will share part of their proceeds with the Spokane County Regional Animal Protection Service, live music, and a classically trained artist offering face painting and quick portraits for a fee.

For more information about Art on Broadway, call (509) 999-3583. Visit Amy Galbavy’s website at

Art quote of the week

“Creativity is not the finding of a thing, but the making something out of it after it is found.”

James Russell Lowell (1819-1891), poet

Amy Galbavy spent many years in business attire as a biotech pharmaceutical representative. When her daughter Berlin was born six years ago, Galbavy decided to become a stay-at-home mom.

One day, while playing cards at a large round table with her grandmother, Galbavy realized that their game would go much more smoothly with a Lazy Susan. So, she made one. On her website, she explained, “my grandmother had difficulty reaching the cards across the table. The next week I surprised her with a giant Lazy Susan covered with an underwater scene mosaic using stained glass, stone and marble. When it’s not being used for card games or food serving, it reflects the light beaming through my kitchen windows and decorates the room. Family, neighbors and friends began to ask how much I sold them for. This planted a seed.”

Her business experience meshed well with her newfound creativity; four years ago, Sassy Glass was born, and it’s thriving.

While her grandmother sparked the idea, her grandfather helped set it in concrete. After he retired, he sold birdbaths and other concrete garden pieces. When he stopped doing it, Galbavy bought his molds and began decorating them with mosaics. Through trial and error, she taught herself how to handle tools including hammers, scoring tools, breaking pliers, and a grinder.

Her style could be described as Dale Chihuly-meets-mosaic – although she doesn’t blow glass, she brings out the beauty in it by breaking it, sculpturally reimaging it, and combining it with other materials. It becomes a flowing, colorful, light-catching collage, sometimes flat and sometimes three-dimensional, meant to become a part of a home, as accents, mirrors or furniture, hanging in a window or spinning during a game of cards. She sells well and has shipped pieces all over the U.S., packed in blown foam. “Nothing has broken yet,” she said.

Since diving into the creative arena, Galbavy has participated in many art events including Art on the Green and Artfest, shows at Arbor Crest, and on Sept. 14, Art on Broadway, now in its third year. “Usually at a one-day show like this, I pass out all of my business cards,” Galbavy said, “Then I get a lot of custom orders in days following.”

Galbavy will be exhibiting her work under one of two dozen other canopies offering the gamut of mediums including jewelry, pottery, tie dye and paintings. Galbavy is enjoying her new life as an artist. “My first vivid memory is from when I was 4; imagining how something could transform into something else. I guess I’ve always had the desire to reinvent things,” she said.

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