Reflections on Patchwork and Glass

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This was my major project as a final year student in the Glass, Ceramics, Jewellery, and Metalwork BA(Hons) program at the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham. 

With this body of work, I have drawn on my roots as a historian and quilt maker to highlight the beautiful patterns and cultural significance of traditional American block patchwork through an installation of glass objects and fabric panels. The similarity between the construction and patterning of patchwork quilts and murrine glasswork holds a particular fascination for me, and has lead me to design glass pieces with large-scale patchwork pattern murrine which seem to float beneath highly reflective bubbles. The reflective and refractive qualities of clear glass unite the glass pieces with the long hand-dyed patchwork banners. The forms of the glass pieces are derived from a study of historic and ancient perfume and oil bottles, and evoke the functional quality of a vessel meant to transport a precious liquid. In this case, the pattern is being transported, in reference to the migration of patchwork patterns along with the women who moved between continents and states.

Patchwork Glass Development Vessels

These vessels were made as part of the development phase for my patchwork bottle designs. There are two types of color application shown here: patchwork murrine and patchwork frit. In the case of the murrine, individual tiles are sliced from thick pattern bars of colored glass. The patchwork frit vessels have a pattern laid out as crushed colored glass instead. 

My goal with these vessels was to develop the long-necked teardrop bottle form while testing application methods and designs with the patchwork patterns. These objects also highlight the reflective qualities of the interior bubble when the glass is kept thick.