Textiles, colour, glass and the outdoors

I work with textiles, a medium not traditionally associated with outdoors, but right from the start I’ve been drawn to making work for the garden.

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A major commission early in my career was these three screens for the Homebase Show Garden at Chelsea Flower Show, and now installed at the Eden Project.

Durability for outdoor artwork is a constant challenge, so I’m always exploring different materials and recently started to use glass as a structural component for my interior work.

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Blok Series 2015

Last year I was over the moon when I won the Friends of the Garden Art Award, and the prize?  An opportunity to work with a master in glass or metal. I chose a 10 week Glass Foundation Course at the Glass Hub in Wiltshire. A fantastic opportunity to develop my understanding of glass and how I might use it to extend my practice.

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Learning to blow a vase in the hot glass workshop

Run by the lovely KT and Helga at the Glass Hub, we had a lot of fun exploring hot glass (glass blowing, hot glass sculpture and sand casting) and warm glass (fusing, slumping and kiln casting).

I loved experimenting with the vitreograph…

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and sand casting…

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Hot glass sculpture was a chance to try free hand sculpting with (very!) hot glass. You have to work fast.

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It’s the clean vibrant colours that draw me to glass.

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Off-cuts waiting to be used in the warm glass workshop.

and the translucency…

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Even the tools a have a beautiful simplicity to them

My work shares many characteristics with glass, particularly the vibrant colours and translucency, and people often mistakenly assume that I work in glass. Or maybe it’s my surname – Glasbrook – although as far as I know my ancestors were Welsh farmers, not glass makers living by a brook!

Spurred on by my amazing time experimenting with glass, I’m hoping to apply for funding to work further with The Glass Hub to develop full scale outdoor work from my experimental pieces.

Why not have a look at my pinterest page for some inspiring glass and architectural glass artworks, or connect with me on instagram to follow my progress on this next journey.

Anna Glasbrook

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