Thursday, 30 October 2014

Blown Away

Cruising around Ubud on our motorbike we spotted a sign for glass blowing and followed it to the Horizon glass workshop. Founded 11 years ago by Ron, an American and former carpenter with dreams of art and a passion for glass. Ron and his team of 4 Balinese apprentices produce fantastic, unique pieces of glass art, functional glassware and even painted pictures encapsulated in blown glass. We ended up spending a happy couple of afternoons watching and chatting with Ron and his team as they created wonderful works right before our eyes. Thanks for the memories Ron.

Check out more of Ron's work at

The team working hard in the workshop producing lamp stands for an exclusive local hotel

Ron turning the glass whilst his chief apprentice adds strings of glass to the body of the work

Ron tells us that "blowing glass is all about temperature control, too hot and the shape and structure is lost, the glass can't be worked, but too cold and the glass could blow or shatter. Its all a matter of practice and trial and error - a lot of error!!"

Ron collaborates with other artists, here below is a collaboration to reproduce a glass replica of the Java Man. This is the popular name given to early human fossils discovered on the island of Java (Indonesia) in 1891 and 1892. They were classified as Homo erectus in 1950, placing them directly in the human evolutionary tree. Estimated to be between 700,000 and 1,000,000 years old, at the time of their discovery the fossils of "Java Man" were the oldest hominid fossils ever found. Every component of the skeleton below and his burial artefacts has been made from blowing and sculpting glass by Ron and his team - truly incredible.

Ron and his team are overlaying a glass vessel, painted with a special lead-based paint, with molten glass and then blowing them up to 3 times the size. The painting is then trapped within the layers of glass. The characters are for a new children's book and magazine series due to be released shortly.

V cool!

Once finished the works are placed into an oven called an annealer which slowly cools the glass over 18 hours to ensure they don't fracture

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