About GFA

Shaping Glass, Shaping Lives since 2009: GFA’s Impact in South African Artistry.

Glass Forming Academy (GFA) is a glass-blowing, bead-making, and kiln-working studio founded in 2009 by Marileen and Retief van Wyk. With over two decades of experience in the industry, Retief holds a Master’s Degree in Fine Art and has received numerous awards and recognition for his work. Marileen received her initial glass flame-working training in San Francisco and has since managed various glass projects.

Together, Marileen and Retief launched GFA in Menlo Park, Pretoria, recognizing the potential for glass to expand beyond the confines of academia. The academy offers training in glass-bead-making, glass kiln-forming, and glass-blowing to the public, and has since become a go-to production studio for training, large-scale architectural glass works, and artistic commissions.

At GFA, we pride ourselves on our design integrity, experienced skill sets, and ultimate customer satisfaction. Our attention to detail, collaborative approach, and passion for all things glass have made us a public favourite. We offer customized design-manufacture solutions tailored to meet the specific needs of our clients. Our team of experts has worked with some of South Africa’s most notable artists, designers, and culinary experts, providing guidance and assistance on a range of glass projects.

Our two production studios offer clients the opportunity to fully realize their glass dreams, whether it’s a personal project, a corporate installation, an interior design element, or an architectural feature. We work closely with our clients throughout the design and manufacturing process to ensure that their vision is brought to life. We understand that time and costs are important factors to consider when embarking on any design project. That’s why we work closely with our clients to develop a cost-effective plan and ensure that all projects are completed within the agreed timeframe.

In addition to offering design and manufacturing services, GFA also provides public teaching facilities for once-off glass-blowing experiences or extended skill development workshops. We are currently offering internship programs in conjunction with the Craft Design Institute (CDI), subject to availability.

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Choose GFA for our extensive experience and knowledge in the specialized field of glass design and manufacturing, as well as our commitment to customer satisfaction and providing unique, high-quality, and breathtaking glass designs.