Hand Blown Glass – The Innovative Use of a Limitless Object

Hand Blown Glass

In modern works of art, an artist does not only limit itself to abstract free painting or figurative freehand sculpting. The use of a universal material such as the glass made exemplary history in the world of craftsmanship. Since it is versatile and that it can be modified into other substance, artists found a new way to use it. Glass wall art has then become popular since the Roman Empire.

Glass wall art comes in many different forms such as hand blown glass and glass panels; this covers glass chandelier, vases and ornaments. The product trend of glass  art does not only limit itself to one. It is used as curtain walls, backdrops, hand railings and stair case.

Many contemporary works of glass art evolved such as the stained glass. It is more popular with its use in churches. The windows are portioned with painting and design. It requires special tools and materials. The combinations of ridged and textured glass are a perfect project. The obvious piece of art of stained glass is evident in the Chatres and Canterbury Cathedral windows.

There is also another technique of glass making. It is the sand blasting. This is the process where the surface of the glass is removed in order for the next layer to stand out. Thick slabs of glass are usually the choice of glass for this kind of technique because it would be able to stand the high pressure.

And of course, the most prominent of all glass techniques which is the hand blown glass. It is the most popular technique because of the inwardness a glass blower would feel upon making this masterpiece. A lot of opportunities for creative ideas are displayed in each product finish. Below is a focused and narrowed reading of the subject.

Puff that Glass

Hand blown glass is the technique where molten glass is inflated turning it into a bubble.  A glass-smith is the one manipulating to how much amount of air would be blown into the glass. The principle behind this is the property of glass to be expanded once it is heated. This process is called inflation. There are different hand blown glass techniques which were developed over the decade. These are free and mold blowing. The process of free-blowing results into many forms of glass arts, these pieces include glass blown table items, wall art, vases and chandelier. As for the mold blowing, it usually follows a pattern for industrial use such as mass production of glass.

Fabricating Art

Glass-smith must be extremely patient. It is because of the long repetitive process it takes for them to see the end product. They must be persistent in their work and have expertise in this kind of craft. They must have strong coordination to be able to precisely know when the glass is ready for heating, molding or cooling and of course their creativity at its finest.

The staple piece that hand blown glass makers need is a heating system for the glass to be melted on and a blowpipe.  A furnace where molten glasses are kept should be about 2,000 Fahrenheit or 1,100 Celsius. Additional of color is usually mixed up in the start of the process. Artists use colored powder or dye for a magnificent effect. It begins when the glass blower reach out inside the furnace using the blowpipe and gathers the molten glass at the tip. The artists now roll the hot mass of glass into a steel plate giving it the mold of a cylindrical shape.  The process needs faultless coordination of both hands.  The intent to be shaping it to what the artist desire involves a constant motion of heating and molding.

And then the blowing begins. The artist will now blow into the pipe for the hot mass to expand.  It will now create a bubble, because of the positive pressure that is trapped inside the pipe. The process is then repeated, until the detachment of the formed glass from the blowpipe. Using a large tong or jacks, the glass blower then patterns a line from the pipe and glass where they will separate. While doing this process the glass object must be in constant shaping.

A punty, this is what they usually call it in the glass industry, is a smaller metal rod that is attached to the other side of the blown glass for full removal of the glass to the blow pipe.  The piece now on the punty will go through one final heating. The glass blower will now carefully drop it into a fire blanket and into the annealing oven. This oven is kept in 950 Fahrenheit and cooled for more than 12 hours.  Slow cooling is a very important process in the making of any glass wall art to become a masterpiece.

Modern Craft of Color and Light

Glass as one of its property is to illuminate light, the effect of it when knead gives off divine artistry. The effectiveness has to do with the material itself, reflecting the olden times to modern one. This has been a challenging work for artists, since then glass has become a staple piece of art in any gallery. That is why pioneering glass artists open up a Museum of glass. The Museum presents timeless classic glass collection of any form of technique known to man.

The first evident use of glass was around the early 1600. It is plain and opaque in color. The molten ones are pretty much good use as jars and jugs that at that time only the rich can afford it. During the mid 1600 people discovered to inflate the hot glass. After that the method was use until the Roman Empire. They have tried to develop it by adding a coloring agent. Details were also added such as the handles and base.

Glass is a universal material. The use of it does not only limit it to one. It has a widespread purpose from functional, technological and ornamental use.

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