Glass artist David Gappa founded Vetro in 1999. During that time, Gappa cultivated a team of glass artists who perform their art of glassblowing in Vetro’s state-of-the-art working studio. The studio and attached fine art glass gallery are located in the historic district of Grapevine, Texas. In addition to creating fine art glass, Vetro artists enjoy educating the public about this ancient art form through live demonstrations. Simultaneously, Vetro’s friendly and inviting gallery staff create a relaxed and comfortable gallery atmosphere in which to browse and shop.
While the facility is located in North Texas, the art has spread across regions. Since its inception, Vetro’s glass has found its way into the hands of art collectors, corporate designers, museum curators, celebrities and leaders of state worldwide.
With an ever-expanding repertoire of original art glass designs combined with innovative glassblowing techniques, the Vetro team is always presenting to the public a profoundly stunning and dynamic portfolio.
The Vetro Team is a collection of highly-skilled glass artists and customer-service driven gallery personnel. Their passion for the art of glassblowing is what makes the working studio and gallery alive with energy and endless creativity.
David Gappa – Founder, Glassblower
A native Texan, born in Fort Hood and raised in Fort Worth, David Gappa discovered and embraced his love of art from a very early age, spending countless hours exploring his creative talents and honing his skills in numerous artistic mediums … painting, sculpting, sketching and drawing to name just a few. As a young adult, he spent over a year in Europe studying these various mediums of art and a significant amount of time in Murano, Italy with the glass artisans.
Gappa earned a Masters of Science in Architecture from the University of Texas at Arlington, graduating Salutatorian of his class. During his studies at UT, he embarked on his passion for glassblowing while assisting with the founding of the university’s glassblowing program and participating in the glassblowing elective for two years. Thus began his vision of opening Vetro Glassblowing Studio, which came to fruition in May of 1999. Since then, Gappa has continued learning through intense workshops, conventions, traveling artisans, private study, and directly from the masters themselves including Martin Janecky, Ross Richmond, Afro Celotto of Italy, and Kenji Ito of Japan. It is through his continuous studies, the building of relationships with artists, the exploration of design, the growth and development of his team, the creation of his art, and the presentation of that art to the public that Gappa strives to serve others. It seems that the closer he comes to achieving this calling, the more there is to accomplish.
Shannon Shumate – Event’s Coordinator
After completing her Bachelor’s of Fine Arts, Shannon packed up her multi-media expertise and moved down to Dallas, where she worked at a bronze foundry until joining the Vetro family in 2005. As Vetro’s events coordinator, Shannon sets up private use of the studio for groups and teambuilding events for businesses. Finally, drawing on her extensive art background and sculptural expertise, Shannon works with clients to fulfill their vision for custom original works of glass art for any space or occasion.
“My whole life has been dedicated to metal and fire.” -Shannon Shumate
Christa Deason – Gallery Manager and Consignment Artist Liaison
Christa moved to Denton in 2013 to study art at the University of North Texas, five years later she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in History and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art, and in 2020 she graduated with her Master of Science. As a freelance artist, Christa has been traveling around the country since 2012, selling her artwork at various conventions and fairs. Using her years of experience in the art world, Christa works tirelessly to keep new glass art coming into the gallery and designing new displays to best showcase Vetro’s creations.
Shannon Powers – Shipping Coordinator & Glassblower
Shannon is a force of nature, she’s also Vetro’s Inventory Coordinator, Shipping Manager and Glassblower. She comes to Vetro with an extensive background in Graphic Arts and is an experienced Creative Director with experience across print and digital mediums. But glass artistry is her passion, Shannon studied at Third Degree Glass in Saint Louis where she applied her love of abstract art into functional glassworks. A few years back, she bailed on the whole corporate thing to pursue her dreams in glass art and is super grateful to David and the team at Vetro for bringing her into a loving family. Also, just a heads up, she’s ridiculously quick.
Thomas Flynn II – Media Coordinator
Thomas Flynn II is an acrylic painter as well as the Media Coordinator and graphic designer for Vetro! Using his practical marketing skills developed over the years, he offers brand consultation, marketing strategy, press release writing and distribution, web design, graphic design, ad design, as well as image formatting/editing for submission to publications, magazines, and websites. His biggest strength as a marketing agent is the ability to dive deep into the research of the brand and being able to identify and cater to their desired market.
Katelyn Whitley – Gallery Sales Associate & Ticketspice Liaison
Katelyn is our nature-loving, frequently camping, Ticketspice expert. Moving from Devine, Texas, Katelyn is currently taking a break from completing her Bachelors in Business Management from Anglelo State University and has joined Vetro as we transition into a fully-digital ticketing system for our beloved Help Create Events.
Christabella Escandon – Gallery Sales Associate
Carrolton native, Christabella is studying to finish her Bachelor’s of Arts, and plans to be a museum curator after completing her Masters at the University of North Texas. With five years of museum work experience, Christabella uses her expertise to design and create beautiful glass art displays in the Vetro gallery.
Whitney Ethridge – Gallery Sales Associate
Hailing fHailing from Tyler, Texas, Whitney followed her passion for photography to Denton, and is set to complete her Bachelors of Fine Arts in 2022. When Whitney isn’t assisting our shipping coordinator, she can be spotted snapping photos at Vetro’s Help Create events. After graduating from the University of North Texas, Whitney plans to pursue a career in packaging and shipping pieces for museums.
Mary Simon – Gallery Sales Associate
Mary Simon currently resides in Fort Worth and holds a Bachelors of Fine Arts from the University of North Texas, College of Visual Arts and Design. Her artwork in a variety of mediums, reflects the many places throughout the world that she has lived and traveled with her family. Mary is obsessed with her family and friends, continually learning and growing as an artist, traveling, chocolate, coffee, hockey, and every shade of blue.