Shot Glasses at Winfield Gallery

Shot Glasses

The first documented use of the expression “shot glass” appeared in the New York Times, sometime during the 1940s. The origin of the term is mysterious in the way of liquor-infused folklore, but these compact drinking vessels define a mythological moment in the American psyche. In how many theatrical scenes have we witnessed the swift downing of an ounce of whiskey preceding the revealing moment or the critical action? For seventy-five years now, these nifty glasses have made a cultural statement that we somehow understand intuitively.

Drinking whiskey from a shot glass infers a kind of ritual, particularly when two or more people share the experience. In its most positive connotations, the act might seal an agreement or a bond of friendship, celebrate or memorialize an occasion or event, or bolster courage for a difficult task ahead. Drinking a shot of something strong from a small but weighty glass is a very different experience than sipping a cocktail, a beer, or a glass of wine. The sense of marking a moment as worthy of note, short but powerfully potent, lends a shot glass the status of a precious object, and it is one that many people do in fact collect.

With this in mind, gallery owner Chris Winfield invited four highly regarded artisans to imagine and design their own interpretations of shot glasses. Willy Strasser, a long time Santa Cruz resident and silversmith, renowned woodcarver Nick Lamb, a native of England now living in Montana, and two Santa Cruz ceramic artists, Susie Ketchum and Carlos Dye all have a significant and well-regarded body of work to call upon. Each has brought a singular perspective to the challenge, and fashioned their version of a shot glass worthy of any sort of memorable moment.

  • Contact Us

  • Subscribe to our Email List