What the heck is that? May 03 2015 1 Comment

My six-year-old son looked at the paper his Sunday School teacher had put in front of him, and said "What the Hell is that?"

Sternly the teacher said my son’s name, and then corrected him: "What the HECK is that!" 

My son replied quizzically, "You don't know either?"

Happily, the Sunday School teacher had a sense of humour and enjoyed recounting the incident for me. We had never heard our boy say anything like that before, so it was an amusing irony that he would choose Sunday School to unveil his expanding vocabulary. 

Over the last couple of weeks I have had my own "what-the-heck-is-that" moment. I created a large screen-melt platter. The result was my most beautiful piece to date.  After three days of firing, it was perfect, and rich with wonderful hidden scenes and images. 

Then, disaster. The next day when I arrived at my studio I found the platter broken into two pieces (photo below). The next day it broke again right across the middle. WHAT THE HECK? 

Not knowing the answer is almost worse than losing the platter. But my glass guru was able to explain what went wrong and propose an adjustment to the firing schedule.

I laid the pieces together on the kiln shelf and refired the platter flat. After recutting it into the round shape, and after it had been sitting a few days waiting for its turn in the kiln, I again arrived in the studio to find my beautiful piece broken. What the heck?

Not willing to give up, I dripped more glass onto the repaired disc and slumped it again into the platter mold. I knew I was running the risk that repeated firing might have changed the properties of the glass, creating too much stress within it.  

This time - success. "Hidden scenes in orange and green” appeared with its own unique scenes of people, animals, birds, fish, plants and more. 

A half hour later, a loud crack sounded as the plate split in two.

What the heck is that? That’s glass art. 

(And yes, I am done with this piece.)

Check out other Glass by Charis pieces here

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