Kiln Formed Glass Art by Connie Gates--Handmade in the Pacific Northwest

The Final Glass Bowl “Serengeti”

In my last post, I told you I was working at creating glass art by using random pieces of unused glass and pattern bars. I have to admit, this project really kicked my butt! It has been fraught with problems, every step of the way. I’m posting several pictures showing the various stages and how I got to the end result. After the second slump, the bowl was wonky, so I tried to re-slump by tilting the mold slightly to compensate for the drooping side. A little progress was made, but not enough. I tried to open the kiln during firing so I could tilt the mold even more, but I wasn’t wearing the right clothing and gear to withstand the horrific heat my kiln was spewing forth! I went ahead a let it finish and decided to sulk a while and let the piece sit and stare at me. I finally decided to just go for it and put it in for the third deepest slump. I perched the mold on a slant again, and this time, it came out a little straighter. Nonetheless, I wound up cutting a healthy inch off one side of the bowl—and not without a lot of work.

For this process, I used a fabulous diamond sintered blade that is small and fits on my dremel tool. I placed the bowl upside down on a lazy susan and set it up on a stand in my studio sink. I turned on the faucet and let a small amount of water flow over the top and down the sides to keep the glass cool and proceeded to cut. My final step was coldworking–using both a slurry and also diamond hand pads.

I really love all of the massive color in this piece of art and have given it the name “Serengeti”. It reminds me of a recent trip I made to Africa, where bold colors were abundant and gave me plenty of inspiration. This may just be my most unusual and favorite piece of art, so far! Enjoy the pictures.
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