Lifestyle

How to blow your own artwork

ALAN Ussher's glassblowing studio in South Lismore has the look and feel of a laboratory.

All around is an array of gas burners, kilns and industrial tools employed to shape the tubes of Pyrex he uses to create his intricate works.

Known as lampworking, this style of glass work was perfected in the late 1800s for the production of lamps and scientific equipment.

It is thought the earliest verifiable object made of lampworked glass is a collection of beads dating from the fifth century BC.

"This is small scale style of working and it is an affordable operation," Ussher said.

 

He takes tubes of Pyrex and manipulates them into shapes, drawing colour and finer shapes into the objects as they form.

It's all done in the blast of flame from the custom made gas burners that fire a variety of flames of different intensities to shape the glass.

Using this technique he is able to create and join complex shapes into functional objects and works of art.

"It is quite a technical process but it is very versatile," he said.

"As well as works of art, I can make hot and cold drink containers and kitchenware such as tea pots and wine glasses."

Ussher also repairs and builds complex scientific apparatus.

He occasionally does repair work for the laboratories at Southern Cross University.

"I have also worked with inventors making vessels for specific experiments they were running," he said.

Ussher was recently part of the 10th Annual Flame on Glass Exhibition at Kirra Galleries in Melbourne.

The show focused exclusively of the work of lampworkers and Ussher created a collection of sci-fi inspired objects.

 

He says he has always been interested in art and music.

"I had worked in a number of mediums but this is the one that stuck," he said

"I have always liked a challenge and this is certainly is a challenging medium.

"I like the versatility and the colour is very attractive.

"I like that it is different and not everyone is doing it, so it's easy to stand out in the crowd."

Ussher's Gallery is open to the public, and he sells his work at the monthly Lismore Makers Market. He also offers classes in lampworking at his studio. The cost is $50 an hour per person and students get personalised tuition in his fully equipped studio.

  • Alan Ussher Glass blowing: 14 Foleys Road, South Lismore. Ph: 0439468983 or visit alanussher.com

Topics:  artist profile, classes




‘Tireless’ principals paid tribute over new Ballina school

School principals thanked for their role in merger

Search for man missing in floodwater has been suspended

A man has been washed down a creek after trying to cross Martin Bridge at Larnook.

A man is clinging to a tree after trying to cross floodwaters

Mayoral candidate booted from car boot market

The Lismore Car Boot Market. Photo Cathy Adams / The Northern Star

But he says he doesn't know what he's done wrong

Latest deals and offers

Zumbo's Just Desserts serves up magical dishes

Gigi Falanga, left, joins hosts Adriano Zumbo and Rachel Khoo on the TV series Zumbo's Just Desserts.

ADRIANO Zumbo’s decadent creations have become prime-time viewing.

Sir Cliff Richard feels 'best' after sex abuse allegations

Sir Cliff Richard is 'back' to his best after sex abuse claims

Blac Chyna sued after car injured 2 women

Blac Chyna is being sued after her friend crashed into another car

Chris Hemsworth surprises kids at hospital as Thor

Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston surprised children at hospital

Single-day tickets on sale for each date of Falls Festival

LAUNCH: The Avalanches' Robbie Chater and Tony Diblasi were the official DJs at the Byron Bay launch of Falls Festival 2016/17.

Find out when is each artist playing this year in Byron Bay

MOVIE REVIEW: War Dogs tells a fascinating true story

Miles Teller and Jonah Hill in a scene from the movie War Dogs.

DARKLY funny film examines the business side of the war on terror.

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep