Robert DuGrenier has been a glass artist, sculptor, and designer since the 1970s and his work has touched both traditional and experimental arenas of the glass world. He started Robert DuGrenier Associates, Inc. in 1980 as a design studio specializing in glass sculptural pieces and three-dimensional design. He has created custom glass sculptural installations for museum and architectural projects in hotels (The Dorchester, London), stores (Tiffany & Co.), museums (The Jewish Museum, NYC), and private residences (Bill Gates) around the world, as well as custom packaging for the cosmetics industry and custom awards. In his personal work, Robert has always been interested in exploring the intersection of art and science.
For twenty-plus years, he has been creating glass homes for hermit crabs to live in - a result of seeing a hermit crab living in the neck of a broken Coca-Cola bottle walk across my towel in the Bahamas. “The fact that it was living in litter that humans had left behind, perhaps while out “shelling” and stealing their potential homes,” says DuGrenier, “spurred me on to create glass shells that are suitable habitats for hermit crabs.” He has sent glass shells to aquariums, classrooms, and private homes all around the world. A marine biologist at Dartmouth College discovered them and has been using them for his research into the communication processes of terrestrial hermit crabs.