First published in 1971, Glassblowing: A Search for Form, written by US glass artist Harvey Littleton (b.1922), remains an important and relevant contemporary work. The selected text sets the context for Breath Taking.Download text (PDF format)
Glass artist and curator Matt Durran, responds to the words of Harvey Littleton, considering the context for glass art 40 years after the first publication of Glassblowing: A Search for Form.Download text (PDF format)
The Crafts Council commissioned poet Adam O’Riordan to create a new work inspired by the glassblowing process.Download text (PDF format)
Elaine Sheldon and Dominic Cooney built their studio in a converted chapel in Staffordshire. They work collaboratively, as well as independently, on commissions, commercial and artistic projects. Film-maker Federico Urdaneta captures the events during a day in the studio. He explores the nature of their collaboration, their working practice and records the rhythm of them at work.
Federico Urdaneta, 2011, 5 minutes
Glassblowing is highly physical; involving the controlled, balletic, often repetitious and precise co-ordination of two people working together. In order to explore these characteristics, a choreographed work was commissioned to embody the physical involvement and communication inherent in glassblowing practice. The choreography has been generated as a response to a sound score, which is based on recordings of glassblowers at work. A duet between two dancers involves contact work to represent the essential elements of trust, cooperation and synchronicity.
Neil Wissink, 2011, 4.5 minutes
In the same breath, a hand-blown, lamp-worked glass trombone is created using breath, and in turn can be reactivated by breath as it is played. It serves as a metaphor for breathing; the breath becoming visible as condensation, the glass allowing the viewer to see this. The film was devised and directed by Kate Williams. Trombone played by Alan Tomlinson.