Hot stuff, hod stuff and dysfunctional forms
The introduction of small furnaces from the US in the sixties enabled glass artists to set up their own studios. Karlin Rushbrooke was one of the first in the UK to do so in 1969 after completion of a Dip AD in Glass and Ceramics. Glass is the result of disorder. It is the bringing together of strong chemical bonds in a haphazard way which allows the molten glass to be viscous whilst blown.
Once inflation and expansion of the bubble or parison of molten glass stops it begins to harden as it loses heat. A chemical called natron works as a flux in the glass. The glassblower needs to have good breath control, and strong arms to hold and turn the blowpipe both in and outside of the hot furnace. And where does that strength come from? Well, when not in the studio Karlin is a professional builder.
With his years of training and experience Karlin is able to free-blow in short puffs to create his beautiful pieces. Whether inspired by an idea such as the ship of fools or responding to the organic life of the glass being blown the fluid pieces created are much admired and sought by collectors. The images here show a perfume bottle being shaped.
With sculptural and domestic pieces in Dudley Glass Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, Crafts Council Collection and other internationally renowned museums Karlin’s creative and technical talents are appreciated by his peers and the public.
We are delighted to have his latest body of work based on the Ship of Fools featured in The Craft Gallery's first showcase from 1st November 2016 to 31 January 2017. There will also be stoppered bottles and goblets by Karlin available to purchase. Plus the work of seven other established or emerging contemporary artisans including thrown pots, upholstery, ceramic sculpture, woollens, jewellery, mixed-media paintings and line drawings.