Robert Ornelas & Manuel Silva

The decorative glass plates and platters are called “pigskin glass” because the backing was originally made from pigskin leather.

Working together since 2002, Robert Ornelas and Manuel Silva are the artists that create pigskin glass in their studio located in the San Leon area outside of Houston. Silva has over 20 years experience and is the third generation of his family to work with decorative glass.

The pigskin glass is environmentally friendly. It is made with recycled window glass, water based paint, foil and screen mesh. The backing material is placed in a mold, decorative material is applied to the backing, and glass is placed on top. It is then heated in a kiln where the heat causes the colors to mix and “slumps” the glass to seal the piece.

Robert Ornelas and Manuel Silva’s works are available through Artworks Gallery in Austin, Texas.