photo Glassblowing

Glassblowing

Glass melted in a high-temperature furnace is applied to the tip of a stainless steel pipe called a blowpipe. The glassblower blows into the pipe and causes the glass to inflate like a balloon, creating various forms. The glass is then placed in a cooling furnace known as an annealing furnace, and slowly cooled until it is finished. In the style called free-blowing, the breath blown into the pipe forms the shapes freely, and different shapes can be created depending on the way of blowing or moving the pipe. In mold-blowing, glass is blown into a wood or metal mold, and large numbers of the same form can be created.

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The shape or thickness of glass creates beautiful variations in transparency and light refraction. Combinations of clear glass and colored glass produce beautiful results as well.

Information

How to do glassblowing

  1. (1) Dip a blowpipe into molten glass to remove a blob of it from a furnace
  2. (2) Blow into the pipe to inflate the blob of glass into a larger shape
  3. (3) Rotate the shape and use a scissors to expand it
  4. (4) Use a tongs to put the finishing touches on the shape, and slowly cool it in an annealing furnace
  • "What Are Traditional Crafts? -A Guidebook to Seeing, Learning, and Enjoying-" Edited by the Japan Kogei Association Eastern Branch. Published by Unsodo / List of works English translation: Kazuko Todate (Art critic / Art historian)

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