Dimensions: 24cm (H) x 37cm (W) / 9.4" (H) x 14.6" (W)
Note: Actual colours may vary due to photography & computer settings.
I look to architecture, architectural photography (Hiroshi Sugimoto, Luisa Lambri), sculpture (Hélio Oiticica) and writing (Junichiro Tanizaki, David Leatherbarrow, Peter Zumthor) to gain some insight in how to articulate structure, space, shadow, light, and colour. In the case of the Itamaraty series, I was particularly inspired by the work of the great Brazilian architect, Oscar Niemeyer, and specifically the spiral staircase he designed for the Itamaraty Palace in Brasilia. The use of orange here is a nod to the vibrant colours of the Tropicália movement.
The technique, which I developed during my MA at the Royal College of Art in London, is a contemporary spin on the Graal technique which was pioneered at Orrefors in 1916 by the designer Simon Gate working with the master glassblower Knut Bergqvist. The making process is in several stages: a glass blank with a thin layer of opaque colour on the inside is first blown. Once the blank has annealed, I slice through it with a circular saw to create elliptical rings. I cold-work both sides of the rings, bevel, and polish. I then re-assemble the rings to make layered structures allowing for areas of transparency, translucency, and opacity. The rings are fused together in the kiln before being picked up and re-blown. Heat and gravity distort and disrupt the lines to produce dynamic and structurally complex pieces – each one unique.
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Based in: London
Isabella Kullmann lives and works in London.
She studied history and history of art at the Sorbonne in Paris before embarking on a career in journalism and publishing. She worked for numerous publications including British Vogue where she was Picture Editor for over ten years. She took up glass making in her spare time beguiled by the creative possibilities of the material. She completed an MA in Ceramics and Glass at the Royal College of Art in 2015 and an MPhil in 2020.
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