Studio Thoughts Part II

The Contemporary Glass Society had a great turnout for its Creative Hub session last Saturday, and I suspect that – like me – many people came along because of the opportunity to visit the studio of Angela Thwaites that was promised as part of the day. Angela is a well known glass artist who casts beautiful intimate objects from glass and teaches glass internationally. I also knew Angela from a few years ago when at one of our Teepee Glass exhibitions we invited Angela to exhibit as our guest artist, so I was keen to see where she makes her work, and clearly I was not the only one. The assembled crowd was so large that a local church hall had to be sequestered to accommodate us all for the Creative Hub discussions in the afternoon.

It wasn’t until the evening that the group snaked its way through the streets of south London to Angela’s house and so it was that we were ushered in smaller groups of four through her now dark and freezing garden to squeeze into her compact studio.

Glass casting requires a lot of equipment so I had expected a large space but I was taken aback at how small her garden studio was, and yet how everything fit so carefully into the tiny space. Various kilns, cold working equipment and a large sink all fit into this three dimensional puzzle of a space with all the surrounding gaps filled with shelves of materials and samples of moulds and glass.

Having just packed up and left my own studio – and knowing I will be without a studio for months now –  it seemed at once familiar and poignant to be reminded how we artists try to create beautiful and perfect objects from within a space that often feels like organised chaos. 


However seeing Angela’s bike propped up against the machinery, and realising that she must have to move that bike into the garden every time she works, I also remembered the reason I  am moving…. there came a point when my studio tipped from being organised chaos to simply being chaotic, and ultimately I am putting up with being studio-less for the next few months in order to build a better space for myself in the long term.

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