Rotunda Chandelier by Dale Chihuly

Rotunda Chandelier by Dale Chihuly

My little heart skips to the glass collection in the V&A Museum, and along the way we are blessed with a beautiful sight of the Rotunda Chandelier by Dale Chihuly, shown here on the right.

Later in Room 129 we come across his wonderful homage to Persian art, as shown below. There are about 8 pieces of his work in the V&A (based on the online search for his work) and I have been very fortunate to see his work in several other locations around Europe.

It is always a joy to see Chihuly’s pieces, and even hear of his glass installations elsewhere via friends, such as this recent Las Vegas reporting! For me, the scale of Chihuly’s work is also what captivates, technically and visually.

Deep Blue and Bronze Gold Persian Set by Dale Chihuly

Deep Blue and Bronze Gold Persian Set by Dale Chihuly

 

I love the finish of the technique presented in this piece below by Toots Zynsky, which used drawn glass threads for fusing and slumping until the desired effect was achieved. On first perusal in the museum, I wasn’t sure if the glass ‘threads’ were hand-pulled at the torch, or glass rods were fused in the kiln, or if a vitrigraph kiln was used to create these ‘threads’… Just thinking about the technical composition is part of the puzzle for me, the brain work behind the beauty! Later, I found her excellent video explaining her approach and I wasn’t too far out. Toots Zynsky has developed her own style called “filet de verre” in which fine glass stringers are arranged with some delicacy and finesse, ready for kiln fusing, slumping, hot-working, etc. Her video shows the start to finish of such a piece as shown below. Pretty remarkable!

I don’t know the brand of glass used here by Zynsky, but the brand I have used for fine detail work are produced by Bullseye and the colour range is vast for fusible grade opaque and transparent rods/stringers. Arranging these as Zynsky does is some feat!

 

Dondolante Serena 2000 by Toots Zynsky

Dondolante Serena 2000 by Toots Zynsky

 

Bilbao, by Lino Tagliapietra

Bilbao, by Lino Tagliapietra

Murano-born Lino Tagliapietra has produced some stunning glass pieces. My photograph here on the right does not do much justice for the beauty of the glass artistry, but his website is pretty wonderful to peruse his glass vessels. Training in Murano, he attained the status of a Glass Master in his early 20s and later he found himself established in Seattle with his second studio, and where he also resided at Pilchuck Glass School.

 

I have much to thank the Wikipedia article on Lino Tagliapietra because as I was learning all about his illustrious career for this article I just came across a very intriguing project he contributed to at MIT.

The MIT Glass Lab has created a nice piece of open-source software, called VirtualGlass, to help the glass artist put their colour and pattern ideas together for creating new glass rods/stringers (very useful for the torchworker/lampworker) and also for the glass blower and kiln worker for developing techniques when twisting and shaping glass in various vessel shapes.

The colour palettes in the software are based on Reichenbach, Gaffer and Kugler at the moment, but who knows if Bullseye, Northstar, Effetre Murano, and all the other amazing glass producers, will come on-board later.

I wrote a short introductory article on this software 🙂

So moving along!

Colorbox 1-5 by Jun Kaneko

Colorbox 1-5 by Jun Kaneko

What a beautiful piece of art made by Jun Kaneko using Bullseye glass, shown on the left!

 

This is a close up of the complete sculpture.

 

The technical abilities one needs to create such artwork is not so easily expressed in words.
Another piece in the V&A collection worthy of much intention in this respect is by Dafna Kaffeman, called Tactual Stimulation.

This is created at the torch (lampworked) and is amazing!

Tactual Stimulation by Dafna Kaffeman

Tactual Stimulation by Dafna Kaffeman

 

And finally, another two pieces that caught my eye:

Under My Wing by Tali Dalton

Under My Wing by Tali Dalton

 

Sublime Transmission by Sally Fawkes and Richard Jackson

Sublime Transmission by Sally Fawkes and Richard Jackson

 

I’m quite intrigued by the dynamic between these two glass artists, Sally Fawkes and her partner Richard Jackson. Fawkes has a special relationship with clear smooth colourless glass and Jackson wields distinct cuts and accents beyond the glacial surface. In this piece of Fawkes, ‘Sublime Transmission’, Jackson adds one single saw blade impression along the top of the almost-finished piece. This can be better viewed on the V&A catalogue page.

There are more pieces in this room that I want to photograph, so on my next trip I’ll take this matter in hand!

If you have the glass bug, there is a related article for this V&A glass collection concerning pieces from Room 131, including works by René Jules Lalique and Fritz Lampl.

Originally published: Saturday, January 9th, 2016 at 05:20 in Celebrating Art, Inspiration

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2 Responses to “Room 129 in V&A”

  1. Coach M says:

    On I Fiori di Como:

    “The piece cost $10 million but has surely paid for itself many times over; it has been popular since the resort opened. It is a perennial favorite on published lists of things to do in Las Vegas, says Erden Kendigelen, executive director of Bellagio’s hotel operations.

    The sculpture consists of 2,000 hand-blown glass blossoms that weigh about 40,000 pounds. They are supported by a 10,000-pound steel armature. Every morning between 2 and 5 a.m., a team of eight to 10 engineers cleans and maintains the sculpture, Kendigelen says.

    Though it is clearly an attraction for the for-profit resort, ‘Fiori di Como,’ and by extension, Chihuly, is the standard-setter for public art in the [Las Vegas] valley, art experts say.”

    http://www.reviewjournal.com/entertainment/arts-culture/chihulys-art-blossoms-bellagio-and-beyond

    Indeed.

    • 😀 thanks for the excerpt!! $10 million will cover the kiln costs, I should think, with a little left over for the coffee and cake 🙂 I’m writing up Room 131 at the moment… all exquisite eye-candy!

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