After a 20-year career as an architect in the United States and Australia, Michael Janis returned to the US with a focus on working with glass. In 2005, Janis became the Co-Director of the Washington Glass School and Studio in Washington, DC. He teaches at the Washington Glass School and he has taught workshops on his unique techniques in glass around the world. Awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in 2012, Janis went to England's University of Sunderland and taught at the UK's National Glass Centre where he became an Artist-in-Residence at the Institute for International Research in Glass (IIRG).
Janis has received numerous awards for his artwork including the Florida Art Glass Alliance’s Emerging Artist Award 2009, the Bay Area Glass Institute’s 2010 Saxe Fellowship and he was named a “Rising Star” at Wheaton Arts 2011. His artwork was twice featured in Corning Museum of Glass’ “New Glass Review” a review of the year’s top 100 glass works. Massachusetts’ Fuller Craft Museum mounted a solo show of Janis’ glass panels and sculpture in 2011, where they have recently acquired one of his works for its permanent collection. Janis’ artwork is also in the permanent collection of the Art Institute of Chicago as well as in the US Department of State artwork collection at the US Bucharest Embassy.
The James Renwick Alliance named him Distinguished Glass Artist for 2014, and he presented and lectured about his work at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2014.
In 2016, The DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities awarded Michael Janis the 31st Annual Mayor’s Arts Award for “Excellence in the Arts”. The Mayors Arts Awards are the most prestigious honors conferred by the city on individual artists, teachers, nonprofit organizations, and patrons of the arts.
The American Glass Guild (AGG) Conference will feature Michael Janis as the keynote speaker for their 20th Anniversary AGG conference. The AGG is a non-profit organization whose core mission is dedicated to encouraging and promoting the creation, conservation, and history of art glass.