glass

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Design

Islands of Wood Float Amidst Sea of Glass in New ‘Archipelago’ Furniture by Greg Klassen

November 13, 2019

Christopher Jobson

We’ve long marveled at the masterful craftsmanship on display in furniture maker Greg Klassen’s wood and glass creations. The artist’s name has become synonymous with the elegant aesthetic of merged wood and glass that originates from his Pacific Northwest studio, one piece at a time. Since first launching his river table series back in 2014, Klassen has produced nearly 250 tables, desks, and art objects, refusing to grow beyond his one-man studio despite a waiting list that once extended to nearly two years. Lately he’s focused on creating larger bodies of watery glass and the irregular shapes of islands as evidenced in this new archipelago series. He shares with Colossal:

My new Archipelago Series is inspired by islands seen from above. I’ve discovered a growing fascination with the point that the water meets the land and my archipelago pieces really let me highlight this point of inspiration. Whenever I’ve been lucky enough to fly over Seattle’s Puget Sound or the Hawaiian islands, I’m that 38 year-old kid in the window seat, with his face pressed up against the plexiglass looking down with wonder at the islands below. We are so fortunate to live in a time where we get to see our earth from above! Whether it be from a plane, or images capture by a drone, we get to see our earth with a fresh set of eyes.

Five percent of Klassen’s sales are currently being diverted to Charity: Water where he’s is helping to fund a new well for a community that cannot afford one. Several of his pieces most recently appeared at SOFA Chicago, and you can see much more of his recent work on his website, as well as Instagram and Facebook.

 

 



Design

Sprout Oak and Avocado Trees on Your Windowsill with Ilex Studio’s Specially Designed Glass Vases

September 23, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Ilex Studio’s avocado and acorn vases give new trees a head start while adding some greenery to your interior space. Riffing on the age-old technique of using crossed toothpicks or grilling skewers to balance sprouting plants over water, the uniquely shaped glass vessels are comprised of a large, flat-bottomed bulb topped with a smaller open-topped “cup”. The top holds the seed while keeping it dry, and the neck and water-filled base below allow roots to expand. Once the young tree has sufficiently sprouted and is ready to be planted in soil, the Ilex vase can help another one take root. The vases are available on Ilex’s website. (via Design Milk)

 

 



Art

Advanced Technologies Hide Below the Surface in New Three-Dimensional Collages by Dustin Yellin

May 24, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

"Astronauts Building a Rocket Under the Sea" (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 16" x 16" x 8.25" and 16" x 15.875" x 8.125"

“Astronauts Building a Rocket Under the Sea” (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 16″ x 16″ x 8.25″ and 16″ x 15.875″ x 8.125″

Brooklyn, New York-based artist Dustin Yellin (previously) preserves three-dimensional photo collages in glass bricks to create what he describes as “frozen cinema.” Some of his more recent works feature landscapes only slightly more dramatic than our own natural and manmade world, often with groups of subjects working together to construct grand machines. Humans unite to build rockets under waterfalls and the sea, while a time machine is secretly constructed underneath a car junkyard. No matter the subject, each work explores our fate within the Anthropocene and the lasting impression we will leave on the Earth. You can see more of his scenes encased in glass on his website and Instagram.

"Unicorn Disc" (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 16" x 16" x 8.25"

“Unicorn Disc” (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 16″ x 16″ x 8.25″

Detail of "Unicorn Disc" (2017)

Detail of “Unicorn Disc” (2017)

"Building a Rocket Under a Waterfall" (2018), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 48.25" x 17.875" x 18.75"

“Building a Rocket Under a Waterfall” (2018), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 48.25″ x 17.875″ x 18.75″

Detail of "Building a Rocket Under a Waterfall" (2018)

Detail of “Building a Rocket Under a Waterfall” (2018)

"Ceremony to Build a Rocket on Floating Disc" (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 16" x 16" x 8.25"

“Ceremony to Build a Rocket on Floating Disc” (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 16″ x 16″ x 8.25″

"Building a Time Machine in Car Mountain" (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 15.875" x 15.875" x 7.75"

“Building a Time Machine in Car Mountain” (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin, 15.875″ x 15.875″ x 7.75″

Detail of "Building a Time Machine in Car Mountain" (2017)

Detail of “Building a Time Machine in Car Mountain” (2017)

Detail of "Group Sisyphus" (2017)

Detail of “Group Sisyphus” (2017)

"Group Sisyphus" (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 16" x 16" x 8"

“Group Sisyphus” (2017), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 16″ x 16″ x 8″

"The Peace of Wild Things" (2018), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 48.25" x 18" x 17.5"

“The Peace of Wild Things” (2018), Glass, collage, acrylic, resin 48.25″ x 18″ x 17.5″

 

 



Art

Small Glass Animal Sculptures by Claire Kelly Connect to Larger Issues of Conservation

May 5, 2019

Andrew LaSane

All images courtesy of Claire Kelly

Rhode Island-based glass artist Claire Kelly creates adorable animal sculptures out of glass that connect to serious issues concerning the environment. Balancing on balls and standing precariously in boats and on peanuts, the little birds, giraffes, and elephants invite viewers to consider the fragility of the world and how micro-level choices can have a major impact.

Kelly tells Colossal that the series of animal sculptures began in 2014 after a hiatus from her other work. The works were born from drawings and sketches she made as a creative outlet. Working with colored strips of glass called cane, the process and materials affect the size of the final pieces. The cane allows for complex patterns, but in preparation for the glass blowing process they need to be heated on a flat kiln shelf. “The size of the kiln shelf plays a part in how large the final glass piece can be,” Kelly explains. “The larger the shelf the heavier it is and the larger team and heating chamber I need to have.” While she does occasionally work at a larger scale, the artist says that size is not the most important factor because she is inviting viewers into “an intimate microcosm.”

Although she works with easily recognizable animals, Kelly’s use of color and pattern adds an imaginative element. “Depending on the animal and form I try to use colors that come right up to the edge of being conflicting but somehow work together,” she explains. “Color is so emotionally charged and I often find myself getting really happy when using certain colors in combination…I experiment a lot and have a sense of how some colors react to their neighbors. There’s a really sense of harmony and balance that I look for when planning a color scheme.”

As Kelly has continued to explore representational themes in her work, she shares that her has recently been inspired by creating multiple related pieces in a tableau. “It’s modular and adds interest from a design standpoint,” the artist shares. “I can create forms that interact with each other while telling a story about their little world.” To discover more of Claire Kelly’s colorful creatures, follow her on Instagram.

 

 



Art Craft

Rare and Endangered Butterfly Species Recreated in Glass by Laura Hart

April 20, 2019

Andrew LaSane

Attacus Atlas

Glass artist Laura Hart (previously) uses a range of techniques to translate her love of plants and animals into meticulously crafted sculptures. For her “Butterflies” series, the artist has recreated rare species and subspecies from around the world with bright colors and symmetrical designs that perfectly mimic their natural muses.

Never recreating the same species twice, Hart casts the bodies of her one-of-a-kind insects using the lost wax molding and pate de verre kiln casting processes. Each delicate sculpture is around 18cm wide. A glass fusing method is used to make the realistic wings in stages, with intense hues and translucent sections outlined in black. The sections form tiny stained glass windows, altering the light that passes through and reflecting onto the tables and display stands. Sterling silver pieces are added to complete the sculptures, forming the legs, antennae, and proboscides of the colorful creatures.

To see more of Laura Hart’s glass works, check out the artist’s Facebook page.

Kaiser-i-Hind

Large Tree Nymph

Queen Alexandra Birdwing

Scarce Swallowtail

Spanish Moon Moth

Yellow Swallowtail

Zebra Swallowtail

 

 



Art

Bonsai Tree and Sea Creature Sculptures Crafted from Blown Glass by Simone Crestani

March 1, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Glass artist Simone Crestani uses borosilicate glass with a lampworking technique to create detailed glass sculptures. Each piece imitates imperfect organic forms such as twisting Japanese bonsai trees or lopsided coral. Bonsai is an ongoing theme Crestani often returns to, and views as being a base of his studio practice. “The bonsai is a concentration of life, it overcomes the barrier of size and expresses strength and energy; it is a work of art that is never finished, in which nature continues to develop and evolve,” he explains on his website. “I shape the [glass], but the end result has an identity of its own. I help it to grow, and wait until it gives me an indication of the equilibrium that will allow it to express itself.” You can see more of his glass-based designs, which also include bubbles, bugs, and unusual glasses, on Instagram. (via designboom)

 

 



Art

Vintage Glass Forged into Enchanted Leafy Worlds by Amber Cowan

January 10, 2019

Anna Marks

Bridesmaid's Forest

Bridesmaid’s Forest

In the latest collection by Amber Cowan (previously), colorful vintage glass is sculpted into three fairytale stories: Bridesmaid’s Forest, Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose, and Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph. Cowan transforms discarded glass from the 1900s into sculptural “paintings” that burst with natural forms, and her latest collection of monochrome scenes effortlessly tempts viewers into their enchanted worlds.

Cowan first curates the color of each piece, collecting specific figurines and animals from vintage glass works. She then melts the rest of the glass through a methodical flameworking process to create the scenery that will surround the found figurines. Leaves, flowers, feathers, and tiny glistening pearls are carefully crafted to fill each dense, botanical world.

Bridesmaid’s Forest

The female figurine central to her mint-green Bridesmaid’s Forest  was originally part of a glass ornament called The Bridesmaid, which was pressed from the Ohio-based Fenton Art Glass Factory. Cowan built a fantastical world around the bridesmaid, sculpting a colorful leaf-filled forest which features a whale, snail, and duck nestled within the fragile glass shrubbery. “My story with this piece is that the bridesmaid got bored of the wedding and wandered off to make her own fun,” Cowan explains to Colossal. “It is kind of a fantasy landscape.”

Bridesmaid’s Forest

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose is a spiritual adventure where the natural elements featured in the piece were chosen for their symbolism and how they relate to the bridesmaid’s story. “The figurine is standing in front of a pyramidal line pointed towards the sun; next to her is her feline companion and across from her is the totem animal of the giraffe symbolizing the ability to see into the future and obtain things that are normally out of reach,” she explains. At the base of the sculpture are two swans which fill the narrative with themes of intuition, self-actualization, and love. 

Cowan’s chocolate-colored Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph, is exhibited in the permanent collection of The Toledo Museum of Art and was inspired by Jan Brueghel the Elder’s painting A Fantastic Cave with Odysseus and Calypso in addition to the16th century Grotto Grande in the Boboli Gardens in Florence. “Chocolate Nymph” refers to “chocolate glass,” a popular glass color in the early 1900s that is no longer produced.

Cowan is currently constructing new work for a solo show opening at Heller Gallery in New York on May 3, 2019. To view more of her work, visit her website and her Instagram.

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph