The California Tech

Learning to craft handmade scientific tools in the automated age

Rick Gerhart, a short, smiling man with a voice like the breathy rumble of a gasoline engine, numbers among the shrinking handful of master glassblowers in Los Angeles. He is 73 years old. And when he retires in September, Gerhart will leave the shop – and his legacy – to his apprentice, 28-year-old Nathan Hart.