FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — After nearly four decades, Terra Studios decided to stop creating the Bluebird of Happiness.
They represent a simple small gift of happiness and represent hope and our involvement with the planet.James Ulick, President of Using Art to Create a Better World
Glass Artist Gary Carter said he makes more than 100 bluebirds a day, but after being a staple in the Northwest Arkansas community for so long, Terra Studios in Fayetteville (12103 Hazel Valley Rd.) said it will stop making them for the sake of the environment.
“The bluebirds represent half of our income, so it’s going to be a huge impact on us,” said “Using Art to Create a Better World” President James Ulick.
“Using Art to Create a Better World” is the nonprofit that owns and runs Terra Studios.
For the last 37 years, over eight-million glass bluebirds have been sold to people all over the world.
“We’ve had presidents give them away,” Ulick said. “We’ve had important people all over the world come and get them.”
He said this decision was not taken lightly.
“We wanted to announce before we were going to shut down so people had the opportunity to come out,” he said.
According to Ulick, in one year they use more than one-million cubic feet of natural gas to make the birds, which produces a tremendous amount of greenhouse gasses that threaten the earth.
He said it felt hypocritical for them to continue doing something that goes against what they stand for — protecting the planet.
“It’s a pretty emotional time for us but at the same (time) we feel really good because what we’re trying to do is try and set the example,” Ulick said.”We realize how critical and how important this is and we just want to help people understand that it’s time now.”
In January 2020, the creation of the Bluebird of Happiness will no longer be at Terra Studios.
Ulick said if you’ve been wanting to go see the bluebirds being made, now is the time.
“We encourage people to come out and support Terra (Studios) with all the changes were going through,” he said. “People who’ve wanted to bring their grandkids or friends to see the bluebirds, it’s time.”
Below is a statement from Terra Studios:
Please know we are not making this decision lightly. After careful thought, consideration and countless conversations, and understanding the full financial ramifications, we believe taking action is our only option. The future is at stake!” – James Ulick, founder and board president of Using Art to Create a Better World. “Glass blowing involves burning a lot of natural gas and electricity thereby producing a tremendous amount of greenhouse gasses that seriously threaten this marvelous earth we all share,” continued Ulick, “Therefore, Bluebird of Happiness® and all hot glass demonstrations will be suspended until the technology becomes available to create the Bluebirds without damaging our natural environment. Solutions already exist, yet are not being implemented. We urgently need to join together to bring about the changes necessary to cope with the global climate emergency.Valda Gonzalez, Terra Studios Executive Director