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      Petoskey stone artwork travels to Asia

      A group of East Jordan artists joined together to make artwork that will travel across the globe.

      T hese gifts will be given out by the State of Michigan to some of China and Japan's political leaders.

      F or the last two weeks , James Radtke has been working out of his studio at his East Jordan home. He has been hand cutting and sanding Petoskey stones into the shape of Michigan's upper and lower peninsula.

      " We wanted to combine what I do , w hich is stone , to what they do best , which is working with glass ," Radtke said.

      A fter Radtke finished the stones, he sent them to Jordan Valley Glassworksfor the next step.

      G lass artist Glenna Haney hand crafted the box with glass blowing techniques. Each piece was made with Michigan copper and sand.

      " When you look at the box the effect is to appear as though you're looking at the state into water," Radtke said.

      T his team created 30 boxes , but only the best seven were sent to the Lansing.

      N ext week , the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development will take them to China and Japan to hand out as a gift to Asian dignitaries.

      T hese artists hope that their work can serve as a piece pride and prove that Michigan's art can hold its own on the world stage.

      " They can refer to it and they can say I know exactly where this was made and how it was made and say it was made by the citizens of our state," Haney said.