Istanbul, TUR
We have investigated all aspects of glass making in Istanbul over the last few days. We moved between a small studio that has just opened in the city centre to a company specialising in glass decoration, and then on to a stained glass and fusing studio, a glass workshop and finally to the local University. We spiced up our glass tour with a few tourist activities: Hagia Sophia, Basilica Cisterne ...more
Istanbul, TUR
Last Tuesday we took a direct flight from Moscow to Istanbul, Turkey. Upon arrival we made our way by public transport to Cam Ogaci/ The glass furnace. When we reached Cam Ogaci / The glass furnace the security people gave us a warm welcome and showed us to our room on campus where we will be staying. The rooms are very nice with up to four beds, spacious and with marble tiled shower rooms. The ...more
Moskau, RUS
After we had spontaneously joined a very nice Russian man who spoke English and a little German, on a six hour walk around Lake Baikal, we arrived at a town which few tourists reach. Our new friend had been heading for the building where the yearly Physics Summer School takes place. We slept here too, after a relaxing sauna. Sascha, that was his name, had been waiting for the same minibus to ...more
Irkutsk, RUS
From Beijing we started the first part of our journey home. We took the train into Mongolia where our first stop was the capital Ulan-Bator. On the ride we met many nice tourists who were also going the same way: Australians, Canadians, Americans, Swiss – almost every nationality was represented and it was really easy for us to join one of these groups to search for a place to stay in the city ...more
Beijing, CHN
To the Great Wall and back. We’ve been in Beijing for a few days now, staying with relatives of Louise. The Kröll family moved here two years ago as we started our Weiberwalz tour. From the former German colony of Quingdao, we made our way to Beijing by train at the beginning of last week. On our first evening the family invited us to a tasty German dinner, where they had put delicious home-made ...more
Qingdao, CHN
Sometimes we reach our limits in this regulated country but it makes us stronger; when for instance the post and the internet don’t quite work, or when we are being constantly stared at. Back to nicer facts: we only stayed in Shanghai very briefly and visited two glass museums and an enormous installation by Nikolas Weinstein in a hotel lobby. Our first stop was Liuli glass museum, founded by ...more
Ningbo, CHN
Well looked after After a 22 hour bus journey from Jing Ping to Hangzhou, Zheng met us at the bus station. She is the Head of Glass Department at the Arts Academy in Hangzhou and took us straight back for lunch together with the teachers of the glass department. We had a short break before our Weiberwalz talk in the evening, then we took our place behind the microphones together with our ...more
Hangzhou, CHN
We finally have access to the internet again, so apologies for the delayed blogging service. With a lot of goodwill from Tinting and the Politec Normal University in Guangdong and despite a somewhat chaotic organisation, we gave a talk about ‘Weiberwalz’ and demonstrated our glass making skills which the University had asked us to do. We came across more obstacles than anticipated even though we ...more
Gouangdong, CHN
From Japan to China We made the most of our final days in Japan in the wilderness of Hokkaido. We spent two nights at a completely empty and free campsite with lovely staff, set in the woods by a reservoir. We were spoilt for choice with good places to put the tent, and when it was finally set up we cycled to the next village to organise some food. In order in to warm up before bed, we made use ...more
Sapporo, JP
After a lot of running about in Hakodate in search of the right street, we finally managed to find the right spot and quickly got a lift in the direction of Toyako. There is of course a glass studio in Toyako, the Glass Café gla_gla of Daisuke Takatomi. Unfortunately our timing was bad so we only met his staff, but it didn’t matter as they were friendly and showed us around. We spent one night ...more
Shikotsu-ko, JP
From the pleasant Karuizawa we hitchhiked back to the metropolis of Tokyo to finish the last of our glass ‚homework‘. We still had two studios to visit before we had seen the majority of the glass studios in Tokyo. With short notice, Rie let us stay with her for another two nights and so we started the next morning well rested. Our first stop was Chofu Glass, which is a medium sized studio in a ...more
Kariuzawa, JP
Our overview of the past week starts with our farewell from Aja Glass and the big metropolis of Tokyo. Our next destination should be the Japanese mountains in the county of Nagano. We filled an astonishing five boxes with glass which we had produced over the last three weeks in Kenji’s studio. We waved our boxes goodbye and hope they will reach Germany after a three month sea journey. For a ...more
Kawasaki, JP
A visit to the first Japanese glass manufacturer! Our final week at Aja Glass came to an end yesterday. At 10pm on the dot, we finished and today we packed all of the glass pieces we had made into five parcels. Last Friday we had a really exciting day when we visited a few glass studios and a manufacture in Tokyo city with our friend, Rie. First stop was a casting and engraving studio, a ...more
Kawasaki, JP
There is not all that much to say about the past week. We have got used to the chewy consistency of Japanese glass and working without using a wooden block. We sorted some buckets of glass shards and were witness to Master Kenji magically forming an Easter bunny using the pipe. But as Easter isn’t really celebrated here we sorted out our own hunt for eggs. We strolled through Tokyo for a bit and ...more
Kawasaki, JP
Productive days With the first week at Aja Glass studio now over, we were able to exchange 16 work hours against 22 ½ hours for our own use. The work has been mostly sorting glass pieces, separating the remaining bits into crystal, colour and iron crystal glass. The pieces that contain iron will be melted down for green glass, the crystal remains crystal and of the coloured ones, only certain ...more
Kawasaki, JP
We spent most of our extra time in Toyama in the studio with Peter Ivy. After getting up early we started every day at 6.30am by getting things going in the studio. Clearing out the cooling chamber, smoothing over the marks left on the pieces by the pipes, cleaning the studio and preparing everything before work begins. Peter uses different utensils to most other glass makers. He works without ...more
Toyama, JP
Toyama and Tradition! Over the last week we had lots of time to have a look around Toyama and the surrounding area. We also had lots of really good discussions with teachers, students and friends. Toyama reminded us of Zwiesel as there are lots of display cabinets containing glass objects, dotted around the town centre. Also many of the street lights and bridges are decorated with glass. We ...more
Toyama, JP
We’ve dug around Japan’s glass scene a bit more and have visited studios, museums and schools. In typical spring weather, from wonderful sunshine to unending downpours, we went from Minu to Fukui, Kanazawa, via Notojima and on to Toyama. There are two studios near Fukui: Heroshi Yamano’s called ‘Ezra’ in Awara and Watari Glass Studio right by the sea near Ayukawa, run by Watario and Yoko ...more
Fukui, JP
First election and more glass studios! We left ‘Studio Fresco’ at the beginning of last week. First of all, we went to the German embassy in Osaka, where Louise, for the first time, was allowed to vote in the elections for Mayor, Council and Parliament. In this skyscraper with an amazing view, she found herself with a surprisingly long list of choices. After some consideration it was completed, ...more
Izumi-City, JP
As long as you stick to the rules, it’s quite simple to get a visa for Japan. However as we checked in, we realised that we had forgotten to book our flights out of Japan. We were left with half an hour in which we had to research flights, fill in data and buy the tickets, so that we were allowed to enter Japan. In the end it all worked out and the rest of the day ran smoothly. Upon arrival at ...more
Hong Kong, HK
Sunday evening, blogging time in Hong Kong! After we had booked our flights to Japan, we got working on planning our time there. On a big map of Japan, which Louise had drawn on the back of a cornflakes box, we marked every glass museum and studio that we could find from the internet. When we weren’t sitting in front of the computer until 2am, researching, emailing, or watching German films on ...more
Hong Kong, HK
We have completely dived in to the busy pace of life here in Hong Kong, leaving our relaxed life in Taiwan behind us in an instant: making glass, giving a talk and exploring a city full of seven million people. Unfortunately we had to abandon our initial plan to find a container ship to Japan. After lots of research, writing to captains and phoning shipping companies we went back to searching for ...more
Hong Kong, HK
Mountain chain Together with Tsai, we wanted to go up the mountains for two days, to get a whiff of the coldest air in Taiwan. Her family, and especially grandma, were concerned that we had packed enough clothes and food. Aunts and uncles also took a keen interest in our excursion and freely chipped in! Finally we took the train in a southerly direction and hitched a ride up the mountain. Half ...more
Dajia, TW
Roaming through Taiwan with four words in Chinese: Hello, Thank you, Happy New Year and Germany. These four words are very helpful as they make communication more fun for everybody, as we can understand one another better. Every now and then a few words of English were thrown in and with good deal of guesswork, everyone was happy. This way we made it up along the coast and through the misty ...more
Dulan, TW
Helped yet helpless! At the beginning of the week we left Aisha to explore Taiwan a bit more. We spent four days in Taipei, Taiwan’s capital. Only half of the eight million inhabitants were here as everybody else had left to celebrate Chinese New Year at their parents’ place. 2014 is the year of the horse and it started on 1.2.2104. There were horses all over the city and on every house door ...more
Hsinchu, TWN
Most of us know Taiwan from underneath many things where it says: ‘Made in Taiwan‘. However, how many of us actually know where it is? Roughly put, it’s on the level of Hong Kong, above the Philippines and under Japan. Here, things remain exciting and interesting for us as communication, as well as finding our way around can be challenging. We can neither read nor understand anything and so ...more
Agra, IND
F+L Forever! The Taj Mahal is on the program. We spent one week in Agra with the most romantic building in the world at its centre, or so people say. Shah Jahan had this built as a mausoleum and sign of his undying love for his deceased wife. Of course, as dearly beloved travel companions, we had to go and see it! So we joined the masses of tourists to this enchanted place. It’s a palace made of ...more
Agra, IND
We left Ekta early in the morning and after a small detour across the Runn of Kutch, we took the night train to Jaipur. We spent a few nice days visiting the Temple and Palace, browsing and buying clothes and just being tourists. India and Glass Where is it? Near the Taj Mahal in Agra, 50 km away in a town called Firozabad, everything revolves around glass. There are more than 200 companies ...more
Vadodara, IND
A Happy New Year 2014! We spent New Year’s Day in Mumbai. Before that we took up a friend’s offer to drive out to the country to visit a small village. The village, which was 6 hours away from the city, has approximately 900 inhabitants. It is completely without electricity, far away from any shop and even water is strictly rationed for each household. All firewood for cooking, they have to find ...more
Velsäo, IND
Oh du fröhliche, oh du Selige (German Christmas carol)... we had this playing in the background as we boarded the plane, which completely delighted Franca and with our phenomenal Christmas decoration, everything was perfect. In addition, on our second leg of the journey from Singapore to Mumbai we took off into a gloriously colourful sunset while we opened our presents. On arrival in Mumbai, ...more
Adelaide, SA
With a temperature of over 40°C in the studio, it was full steam ahead to the finish line. We were all ready for a break over Christmas and after the third party, while still working from 8am-9pm, the bags under our eyes were getting bigger. Just to able to have a lie in would really help. This wish came true on Thursday. However everyone had to meet deadlines for Christmas business and so we ...more
Adelaide, SA
The last week has flown by with a nice mix of work at the Jam factory and other activities. On Monday we visited Nick Mount’s studio. After a very productive morning at the Jam factory, he invited us over. His workshop is split up in to several small huts in his garden, and includes an open air sander. On the way to his place, we made a short detour to visit Eamonn Verekers little studio. And on ...more
Adelaide, SA
Jam Factory Adelaide Before starting work on Wednesday, we wandered through the botanical garden where we came across a very old museum that had an exhibition on Coco de Mer. This palm tree is local to the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean. The fruit contains the biggest seed known to the botanical world and can reach a weight of up to 45kg, while the seed inside can be up to 25kg. A chat with the ...more
Adelaide, SA
Our last hours in Curtis Circus had come. Louise helped making glasses and vases at the furnace for Harriet’s market at the weekend. Franca escaped the heat of the workshop and shut herself away in the cold shop with ear plugs, apron and safety glasses, to finish off her pieces - although one piece came back to the furnace for a final hot polish. Matt formed deep incisions into a piece almost ...more
Queanbeyan, NSW
Work and encounters Last Saturday we were given the chance to make our own things in the furnace for half a day. We both completely messed up the first two pieces, however the next two turned out to be ok. Louise worked with three different colours and glass segments, which she separated from each other in clear lines of colour and shape. Franca made a coloured cap which she picked up and blew ...more
Queanbeyan, NSW
In and around Australia’s capital, there is a lot of glass to be found. Canberra is well laid out and a cultural hub with lots of glass people. Over the last week, we have worked with Harriet and Matthew. Helping making their pieces as well as components for their works was lots of fun and a welcome change. Their many varied pieces go through different production stages and typically for ...more
Queanbeyan, NSW
Road Trip Once again we left really late, and only made it to the 3pm train out of Melbourne. The plan was to go to Red Hill and the Gordons. Eileen Gordon, the daughter of a Scottish glass engraver, has together with her husband, set up a substantial glass studio with gallery, cold shop and metal workshop. Her background is the traditional art of glass making, and she blows plates with ...more
Melbourne, VIC
Surprises around every corner! But first, we did our glass homework and visited the Sabbia Gallery in Paddington, Sydney where Lisa Cahill is currently exhibiting her work. It’s a beautiful exhibition using one shade of colour and displaying all her different production techniques. Our farewell gift from Sydney was our visas for India and a surprise find of an alleyway full of bird cages, ...more
Sydney, NSW
Wherever chance takes you! Purely by chance, we met Anna, Fabian and Tsai and had an intensive week making glass, with some highs and lows in Sydney. All three of them are exchange students for one term. Anna had heard about us at the glass college in Zwiesel, where she started as an intern shortly after we had left. When she came to Sydney, she heard about these ‘journey-women from Germany’ ...more
Sydney, NSW
A small treat From Ben Edols and Kathy Elliot, we moved to Jane Gaven’s. Jane teaches in the glass department at the Sydney College of Art and was one of the first people we got in touch with in Australia, and who then helped us a lot with contacts in New Zealand. Jane had a surprise in store for us, that we would be able to help the students to make glass, or so we thought. Instead, Jane ...more
Manly, NSW
Some things happen when you least expect it! In this case, it is Ben Edols and Kathy Elliot. We were still in New Zealand’s biggest city, Auckland, and hugely impressed from our visit to Gaffer, when their email dropped into our inbox. And so, we made our way directly to their place in Manly near Sydney. Ben and Kathy have a giant Studio, with well set up hot and cold shops. Ben starts the ...more
Masterton, NZ
Feathers-Flying-Feathers With lots to do after the Glass festival, we immediately started working with the Crystal Chain Gang at the furnace. Our job for the next two days was to mould glass feathers, from a specific New Zealand bird. ‘As many as possible please’, so we had to really get cracking. All these feathers will be used for the Crystal Chain Gangs’ new glass chandelier. Together with ...more
Wanganui, NZ
Kiwi people, kiwi birds, kiwi fruit – every kind of kiwi here. Wanganui is the glass centre of New Zealand and a small town located in the southern part of North Island. There is currently a glass festival running. Many shop windows display glass from New Zealand artists and there are also some excellent exhibitions. At the same time, two courses are running; Evelyn Dunstan on Kiln casting and ...more
Hamilton, NZ
On to New Zealand Our last week in the USA is over and we now move on to New Zealand for a month. Oh, we’re excited! We really liked our time in the States, however after 6 months it was really time to move on. Working with Mike and Misato on Hawaii was a fitting ending, where we helped to produce big colourful plates and vases. Our job was to lay out the tools, protect Mike from the heat and ...more
Volcano, HI
The Big Island You can find M ...more
Volcano, HI
Knowledge is power! Last Friday, at an ungodly hour in the morning, we went to the market with Randy (the boss of Makai Glass) and two other guys from the studio. We wanted to see where they are managing to sell their glass costing $2000 a piece and how enthusiastic the tourists on the beaches of Maui are for handmade glass. Once a week the big hotel resorts organise an Arts and Crafts market, ...more
Makawao, HI
Despite having a substantial collection of all things American in the car, we managed to pack only what we really needed. In Honolulu/Oahu, our first stop in Hawaii, we stayed at Allon ...more
Santa Cruz, CA
1st Anniversary of Weiberwalz – Louise Lang and Franca Tasch on Tour for one year. The 29th July was our first anniversary of the Weiberwalz, which we started a year ago. From Europe we’ve worked our way through the USA and today we fly to Hawaii, on and on we go and are really excited! THANK YOU to all our friends, sponsors and our families who have helped up us get this far!! The last few ...more
Seattle, WA
There were a few parties over the last two weeks, which fitted in with the events: On Saturday Fritz Dreisbach opened his new studio in the presence of many of his glass-friends, and on Sunday there was a skimboard music festival with lovely glass trophies which we had even helped to make. Over the previous days we had helped with organising both events by making glass and bringing things ...more
La Push, WA
Apples, cherries and pears made out of glass: the fruit production is in full flow here. The place where these magical things are being made is called Island Art Glass run by Rob Adamson on Whibey Island. This is where we are working at the moment. It took us only 5 minutes to show him how we get the glass out of the furnace and work it, to make all of his reservations disappear. We found ...more
Greenbank, WA
In the North West, we found the green landscape with mountains and the sea very impressive. As we want to keep a trip to the glass-Mecca-city of Seattle as a special treat for later, we have been circling the area around it. That’s why we drove to Katrina Hude at Greenbank on Whitbey Island, via Tacoma and past Seattle to Pilchuck. In Tacoma there is a very nice glass museum which has its own ...more
Lincoln City, OR
We are getting closer to the Mecca of glass and the glass studios are coming thick and fast! The ride north up the coast is frequently interrupted. Our first very interesting stop was back in Berkley near San Francisco at glass artist Marvin Libovski’s. He has been in the business for quite a while and knows nearly everyone. Thanks to him we have got some more contacts in Japan, China, Taiwan ...more
San Francisco, CA
Along Highway route 1 all the way to Seattle is our goal for the coming weeks; there will be plenty of stops along the way. Before we made our way to LA for the highway, we briefly stopped at Joe Cariati’s studio. Unfortunately he had already finished making glass for the day, but that meant he had time to chat. Joe makes very beautiful pieces; simple in design and colour, very thinly blown and ...more
Los Angeles, CA
Hanging-out, chillaxing and surfing ‘Adorable’, this is our colleague Sarah’s favourite word. Sarah is 26 years old and also works in Celeb’s studio. She is in charge of the orders, some of the sanding, assisting with glass making and looking after the stock; a bit of everything so to speak. If someone has a question, she is the one to go to as she knows where everything is and can always help. ...more
Los Angeles, CA
Since last Wednesday we have been in Los Angeles after a fairly wild first morning in our truck. This was because early in the morning a steady stream of commuter traffic was racing past us, so we had an extended breakfast by the sea before we drove on to find new work. South from LA in Santa Ana, we asked Celeb Siemon and Carmen Salazer for a job. The address we had found on the internet ...more
Crawford, CO
Colorado and wild cowboy stories. Monroe, a very young glassmaker suddenly appeared in the door – we had expected a slightly older gentleman in this beautiful house. However with a dog, 3 motorbikes and 4 trucks on top of that, he was more of the active kind. He introduced us to the land of the cowboys and while hiking told us that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid lived and robbed banks in ...more
Yosemite, CA
What a delicious breakfast! At 8am our host presented us with a breakfast good enough for bears; blueberries, raspberries, blackberries mixed with eight different types of nuts and seeds. That’s all you need to really fill you up till lunch and is a super healthy start to the day. Even Franca, who struggles to get up early, found her way to the table in time for this. This amazing breakfast we ...more
Steven's Point,
Up, down and around. North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin. Penland, Toledo/Columbus and Steven’s Point. This was roughly our route over the last two weeks. In Toledo we only stayed for two days and covered for Charlyn who was too ill to assist Jack. This was really exciting for us as Jack was forming a glass bison from inside, which is a new technique for us. After everything had worked well with ...more
Columbus, OH
After a few detours in the mountains of North Carolina with some very ‘interesting‘ drivers who have kept us on our toes, we had arrived in Ashwill, a new town, where we thought we would stay for the night. This wasn’t meant to be, and by the time it was dark we found ourselves 150km away having dinner at a truck stop. Louise kept running to the trucks which we could see refuelling from where we ...more
Penland, NC
‚Toledo/Ohio, are you sure you want to go there?’ This was the question we got the most when we said where we wanted to go next. Absolutely – because of the beautiful glass pavilion there, which gives you the feeling of almost working outside and is a really interesting building. Immediately opposite is the Museum of Art and in this community everything is easy-going and we have been made very ...more
Toronto, CAN
Canada, with a temperature not unlike Germany. We had both felt so at home in Corning that it was hard to say goodbye. Our newly found friends there were so lovely and we had three fun weeks. On Monday we said our goodbye’s and made our way north on Tuesday. Everyone had advised against it, however it all worked out surprisingly well. On the way, we stopped by our friend Zach and joined him on ...more
Corning, NY
All of a sudden our third week in Corning is over. We ended it with a nice farewell dinner and now the journey through America begins for real. Not knowing where we’ll be in the evening, adds a certain thrill. Throughout our time in Corning, we made the most of some lovely Spring days and spent a lot of time outside in the canoe on the river. Over the last week we were busy making glass, ...more
Happy Easter! Just one day of Easter in Corning. As Easter Monday is not a holiday in the USA, we had to make the most of the one day: searching for Easter eggs, a long and lazy breakfast and a canoe tour on the river. Today we simply grabbed the canoe and carried it on our heads upstream through town. At the top we lowered it into the water and ran the rapids back down. As soon as we had made ...more
Corning, NY
After one phone call, we had 1½ hours to get back to our rucksacks, pack them and be on our way to Corning. Thanks to Peter Drobny, we’ve travelled the 400km much faster and easier than we’d anticipated. We are staying with him in Corning and because he had business in New York, he was able to drive us here. He also gave us a tour of the area around Corning and so we found ourselves stomping ...more
New York City, NY
‘Hello, how are you?’ … we hesitate and ponder over possible replies. Should we tell this unknown sales assistant that I have a sore back and a hole in my tooth? Until our brains have remembered what we have learned by observing Americans, the moment has passed and the appropriate reply: ‘I’m good’ hasn’t come out in time. After these initial stumbling blocks, we succeed in having conversations ...more
London, UK
London is quite a bit bigger than the previous towns we have visited, but helps us to get ready for the really big one: New York City. London for us means two and half weeks with Michael Ruh, who is currently working in a temporary studio in south London before the planned move to his new studio in March. Despite this, business runs as usual and there is a lot to do. With Michael’s guidance, ...more
London, UK
The combination of Amsterdam and sunshine was super. On the second day, we went straight to the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and were even allowed to make glass at the furnace. After this hadn’t been possible in Leerdam, it was great to be working again. We spent time in the town and met with people we know. We also visited our friend Hans van Bentem, who we had met at the International Glass ...more
Leerdam, NL
Hey ho, we are finally on the move again! After the ‘Passagen’ exhibition, we went to the Embassy in Frankfurt to arrange our visas for the USA. We really do have them for 6 months; amazing! From there we travelled with a Dutch driver directly from Frankfurt to Leerdam. As always with no fixed plan, we walked into the Glasblazerij des Glasmuseums (the glass studio of the Glass Museum) Amazingly, ...more
Köln, D
We would like to invite you to the ‘PASSAGEN’ in Cologne. Here in the “wohnbar” by Lino Lanninger, we will present the Weiberwalz project and our Glass pieces. From 14.1.2013 to 20.1.2013 between 13.00-19.00 in Heliostraße 15 (in the courtyard), 50825 Köln. We’re looking forward to seeing you there. Die Weiber ...more
Basel, SUI
Merry Christmas! Tomorrow, our four weeks in Basel are over. It has been exciting and we have learnt so much. We have worked a lot, visited the Paul Klee Museum in Bern and the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, gone hiking in the countryside around Basel, eaten tasty Italian at ‘la Mama’, and during the week worked mornings and afternoons. We have helped with the production of the spheres at ...more
Basel, SUI
It’s really busy here in Basel, with a combination of assisting with the glass making, sanding, silvering and cleaning, and all that for a single sphere. Each one is labour intensive! The spheres get a complete care package right from their conception from the furnace. Firstly, they are blown with the pipe in four different sizes and many different colours. Once they have all survived the cooling ...more
Basel, SUI
Hitchhiking from the middle of France to Switzerland took a long while as most of the French drive to Paris on the motorway. So instead of the motorway, we decided to use other main roads, but we really had to walk a lot. At one point Louise even made a ‘Stop’ sign, because all we were doing was walking. Just then, Constantin stopped for us, a Romanian forester who was on his way to pick up his ...more
Bruniquel, FRA
There are a lot of glass studios in France, even though not widely known. A few we have stumbled across and others we will unfortunately have to miss out, as we don’t have time to fit in a visit to all of them. From Savona we drove in a truck which was heading towards Barcelona and dropped us off in Beziers, so that we could visit Ramona, a friend from our Glass School. Together with Ramona, we ...more
Savona, IT
Away from the glass world of Murano, to Bolzano through Milan and on to Savona. The last week has consisted of travelling and meeting some really lovely people. On the way to Bolzano we travelled with two ladies, who invited us to their house for lunch. Once full-up with pasta, they showed us their town of Bassano and then left us at the petrol station, whose manager they know and who soon ...more
Murano, IT
So we didn’t sign up for the convent, as we spontaneously decided to check out some culture in Villach, Austria before we moved on to Italy. Initially we were just looking for somewhere to sleep and inquired at Kärnöl, where a reading in the world’s smallest theatre was taking place. This is where we met Jacob and Käthe from Gailtal who run a guesthouse next to the ski slopes. At the end of the ...more
Riedau, AUT
They say ‚you should ‘stop when the going’s good‘. That’s why we left Nový Bor and Štěpánek even though we liked it a lot there. We could have stayed for ever, but instead we went to Paul Osterberger in Austria. He would be our next stop; we know him from the Glass School in Zwiesel, where he would occasionally arrive and fill up his car with the leftover glass waste. Paul had trained as a glass ...more
Nový Bor, CZ
Štěpánek und Štefánek – it has taken us a while to pronounce these two names properly so that the mostly Czech people we talk to understand who we mean. They are both very good glass makers in the Czech Republic; Štěpánek in Nový Bor and Štefánek in Desná, which are 80km apart. Since Wednesday we have been with Štěpánek and we have visited Štefanek in his 12 m₂ studio, during our brief trip to ...more
Nový Bor, CZ
IGS, 11th International Glass Symposium. Activity, fun – it’s absolutely incredible what the Czechs have managed to put together. Artists have come from all over the world and their designs were made into actual pieces by various glass making teams in the studios and glass companies of Nový Bor. The teams produced piece after piece; neither the size nor the detail of the some of the designs were ...more
Lindava, CZ
After two days of hitchhiking, we’ve been with Jiri Pacinek in Lindava since the day before yesterday. Hitchhiking in a country where we don’t understand the language at all is a new experience for us, therefore we have to be prepared to walk with our big rucksacks. However, a ‘Dekuji’ (‘Thank you’ in Czech) puts a smile on the drivers’ faces. In Jiri’s studio and in all of Lindava it’s the calm ...more
Glashütte, DE
For one week, Louise helped Peter Kuchinke in the museum to make spectacularly large vases, constructed from several parts which were produced by moving the pipe at a 90° angle. These days were quite exhausting but I’ve learnt a lot. Now we are working together again; Franca has arrived and Peter has returned to Nordjütland. As it is so pretty here and there was the opportunity of working in ...more
Bornholm, DK
Having left Franca and Jonas in Skagen in order to help Peter Kuchinke again, I had the opportunity to first travel with him to Bornholm. This is a small island south of Sweden belonging to Denmark, on which a European Glassmakers’ meeting was taking place. There were three exhibition openings and a selection of talks and seminars. I visited the exhibitions as well as the Royal Danish Academy of ...more
Skagen/Mygdal, DK
The girls are going their separate ways again. Louise has a job with Peter Kuchinke and is going with him to Berlin tomorrow, where she is going to help him finish a large commission. Franca is still in Skagen where she works every day with Jonas. Making glass seven days non-stop is quite something else; the Danes don’t even close their shops at the weekend. That’s why we get up every day at 8am ...more
Skagen, DK
This week went by quickly and we are working again. While Franca enjoyed Skagen with a visitor, I worked with Jonas making drinking glasses with cut bases and coloured rims. I also produced glass droplets and in the evenings or mornings had a chance to try out different things for myself. Today, after a long time, we finally made glass together again; half the day we worked for Jonas and the ...more
Skagen, DK
We will return, but then we want to see the guys from Transjö actually making glass. We’ve already thought of a competition: who can complete the most ‘Incalmos’ with the largest number of 90 degree connections. This means connecting as many small pieces as possible while hot and in the process moving the pipe as often as you can. This may be done by only two people, in one go, using at least two ...more
Transjö, SW
Aren’t we lucky, said the boys yesterday, when we arrived in time for Jan-Erik Ritzman’s and Lars‘ birthday with cake. We had left Höör only at 14.30, after we’d taken a spontaneous two day job. The ride back to Transjö, only took us three hours in three different cars. We wouldn’t have been quicker in our own car. After our night in Ahus we hitchhiked further down along the east coast of ...more
Ovesholm, SW
With slightly lighter rucksacks, we left our ‘base’ at Dan and Lars’ on Monday morning for the last time. First stop was Ole Victor 30km away in Pukeberg/Nybro. After a shower and a meal, we stood at the roundabout in Eriksmala and confidently held up our sign. After ten minutes a red car stopped and Franca said, ‘I think that’s our man’, which wasn’t a joke as it turned out to really be Ole ...more
Transjö, SW
Canoe, glass, cycling and fishing tours – that’s how we have spent our last few days here in Transjö. We’ve looked at the big glass manufacturers here in the local area. We’ve tried our hand at glass making on a very wonky bench in the now closed Kosta Glass School and spoke to some of the old teachers there, who miss their old jobs. There is no work for us in Smaland, as there are simply too ...more
Transjö, SW
There are so many nice people! On Monday at 2pm we boarded the ferry at Frederikshavn for Göteborg in bright sunshine and straight away found our lift to Halmstad; Elna and Bengt from Sweden. We were very grateful as in Göteborg it was raining heavily. Throughout the afternoon the weather got better and by evening we had even made it to Växjö; unfortunately though it was too late, as all the ...more
Lonstrup/Skagen, DK
We’ll be here in Denmark until tomorrow morning. Over the last few days, we have been living and working in separate locations. Louise has been assisting Peter Kuchinke with glassmaking in Lonstrup, where they have worked solidly from 12.00 to 17.00. Franca has been in Skagen from Wednesday to Sunday assisting Jonas Brus Steahr. We’ve both been helping with the production of stemware, jugs and ...more
Mygdal/Skagen, DK
We now have our first glass making days behind us. As Peter momentarily didn’t have any work for us, we explored the region for a few days. This is how we got to Skagen and Jonas Brus Staehr who immediately offered us some work. We’ve been taking it in turns working with him this weekend, bringing him glass for him to make bases for drinking glasses, bases for bowls and goblets. Jonas is a big ...more
Mygdal, DK
For three days we have been in Denmark. Having spent one night sleeping in the open air on a football pitch, we made it directly from Kolding to Mygdal to Peter Kuchinke. Unfortunately we haven’t had a chance to make glass yet, as Peter has to sort out a furnace from Italy in Fraunau. Over the last few days we have explored our surroundings: once to two glass workshops in Lonstrup and on to the ...more
Zwiesel/Hamburg, D
And suddenly we find ourselves in Hamburg. Our starting point was the Glass School in Zwiesel. The school and the local community had organised a great farewell party for us. The odds this morning were that we would only make it to Kassel, but we are better than that! Franca’s parents gave us a lift to Würzburg, and at 5 o’clock, upon noticing our pile of luggage, Michael asked where he could ...more