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The United Nations General Assembly approved a resolution declaring the year 2022 as the International Year of Glass to celebrate the heritage and importance of this material in our lives. To celebrate this, the New Ashgate is delighted to present two art glass exhibitions this year.
This exhibition is a collaboration with the Contemporary Glass Society to present Joyful Reflections, an exhibition featuring 15 exceptional makers working in a variety of diverse glass techniques.
The Contemporary Glass Society is the leading organisation representing national and international glass artists, designers, and makers. With over 1,000 members, the society champions the work of independent makers through a variety of initiatives including business development opportunities and exhibitions at leading galleries all over the UK.
On their 50th anniversary, we are delighted to announce that the Crafts Council has selected the exhibition as a Make! Craft Live! partner.
In Joyful Reflections, the artists step back from the sadness of the pandemic and embrace the joy of life as we know it now. Vibrant colours and transparent forms reflect the joyful moments we have come to appreciate in everyday life.
Selected makers include Teresa Chlapowski, Hannah Gibson, Jianyong Guo, Laura Hart, Julie Light, Roberta Mason, Wendy Newhofer, Lisa Pettibone, Laura Quinn, Morag Reekie, Amy Skachill Burke, Nancy Sutcliffe, Cara Wassenberg, Frans Wesselman and Sandra Young.
Testing the parameters of the material, the makers highlight their refined craft skills including blown, cast, fused, engraved and stained-glass techniques through a collective of sculptural and decorative work.
The exhibition highlights the luminous, reflective, and often illusional qualities of glass, celebrating its unique ability to express fragility, rigidity, pattern, and form.
Our second exhibition for the International Year of Glass opens on 24th September, presenting stained glass by Jessica Stroud, the Surrey Artist of the Year 2021.
Wendy returned to college as a mature student to enrol on a part time Art Foundation course and spent much of her first year engrossed in printmaking. When she was introduced to glass, she was immediately entranced by the effects she could achieve working with inclusions of metal leaf and wire to draw within glass. Her most recent work, her miniature landscapes, highlight her influences from her printmaking and drawing background.
Wendy started creating miniature landscapes a couple of years ago based on photographs and sketches of places that she has visited on her walking holidays. Water features in many of her landscapes as she finds it has a seductive property and delights whether it's a small stream on a summer's day or a vast seascape.
The landscapes are made by cutting and assembling layers of metal leaf including copper, silver and aluminium and wire which are then covered with float (window) glass and fired on in the kiln. What is special about this process is the soft palette of unique painterly colours that this combination of materials produces. It's a wonderful magical alchemy seeing the shiny metal leaf transformed by heat into beautiful subtle colours which are very different from the colours of commercially produced fusing glass.
When the pandemic struck, going outdoors for daily permitted exercise became a crucial factor in keeping spirits up. Wendy found inspiration in a beautiful neighbouring water meadow and nature reserve with an abundance of trees to study. Her landscapes are small but curiously tactile and work neatly at this scale, almost like a monochrome postcard.