Viewing articles by Emma Park


The exterior of the National Glass Centre, as viewed from the towpath along the waterfront in 2023. photo: jo howell

Thursday June 20, 2024 | by Emma Park

SPECIAL REPORT: The Battle to Save the National Glass Centre

In 2024, British glass is in a state of profound crisis. Budget cuts are eviscerating programs at arts institutions around the country, which have been battered by post-Brexit inflation and export/import tariffs, the Covid pandemic, and the loss of E.U. arts funding. As the Art Newspaperput it in a July 2023 special report sparked by the closure of the major British art fair "Masterpiece," being one of the most expensive of the arts to operate and one of the least widely understood, has been particularly vulnerable to overzealous administrators in a time of national belt-tightening and a policy shift towards prioritizing STEM subjects.

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Fr Romont Vmr Vo 254 2 Scaled

On view as part of the "Iconic PIeces" exhibition at the Romont Glass Centre's Vitromusée, this 1949 vase, designed by Fluvio Bianconi for Venini, is known as "Vase Fazzoletto," and stands just over 12 inches tall. © vitromusee romont

Thursday January 4, 2024 | by Emma Park

In Romont, Switzerland, the future of glass art in Europe was discussed last Fall while the Vitromusée showcased masterworks of the past and present

At a recent Fall conference titled "Concepts and Aesthetics: New Tendencies in Glass Art (20th-21st centuries)" held at the Romont Glass Centre, Switzerland, questions about the future of glass art were never far from the minds of those in attendance: curators, staff, and professors from glass museums and academic programs around Europe. While in Switzerland itself, where the small Alpine town of Romont is nestled in the foothills of the mountains, the strong Swiss economy and a national dedication to arts funding have largely insulated them from the funding struggles of their peers, the mood was colored by concern about budget cuts. At the September 22nd event, however, anxiety seemed far from the conference venue, itself, ensconced behind the sturdy walls of a castle dating back to the thirteenth century. Here, the Romont Glass Centre consists of a major exhibition space, the Vitromusée, as well as a library and research facility named the Vitrocentre. The center's director, Francine Giese said the Romont has three primary areas of focus on historic and contemporary glassmaking:

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Wednesday April 7, 2021 | by Emma Park

CONVERSATION: "Blown Away" standout Elliot Walker on what it means to take top honors in the Netflix show's second season

Elliot Walker was the unexpected champion of the second season of Neflix's Blown Away. The combination of technical accomplishment and creativity in his glass sculptures, rounded off by quirky titles (Cogito Ergo Sum, Mr Noteworthy, Bodge Job), proved to be a winning one. He has just exhibited at Collect 2021 and is due to take up a residency at The Corning Museum of Glass, part of the prize for winning Blown Away, when circumstances permit. Walker currently works from a studio in Hertford, England, with his girlfriend and fellow glass artist, Bethany Wood. Below are some excerpts from the interview which he gave to Emma Park, Glass Quarterly's European correspondent, who is at work on a full-length feature on Walker as an artist and on his place in British contemporary glass, for an article that will appear in the forthcoming Summer 2021 print edition of Glass (#163), on newsstands June 1.

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Glass: The UrbanGlass Quarterly, a glossy art magazine published four times a year by UrbanGlass has provided a critical context to the most important artwork being done in the medium of glass for more than 40 years.