Gifted 20

24 October 2020 – 10 January 2021

Gifted 20 is the latest in our series of annual selling exhibitions held at National Glass Centre. The work displayed is made by artists working locally, nationally and internationally in glass and ceramics. This is a fantastic opportunity to buy unique, high quality gifts across a broad price range.

Gifted 20 is also available to purchase online.

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Artist Profiles

James Maskrey 

James Maskrey has a career in hot glass spanning over 25 years. He works for the University of Sunderland as a Senior Glass Technician supporting the delivery of the educational programmes and with National Glass Centre as a facilitator for artist projects. His artistic practice is based around making objects with narrative. He has a particular interest in historical voyages of endeavour, encompassing the ‘heroic age’ of polar exploration. His pieces are held in many public collections including The Victoria and Albert Museum, The Crafts Council, National Museum of Scotland and National Glass Centre.

Although part of his skills set, James never makes production ware commercially, so this is a rare opportunity to see this work. He says, ‘These pieces are really objects of making, a celebration of craft and material. Some of these, particularly goblet making serve as exercises I undertake to keep my eye in and prepare me for a making session.’

Frances Spice 

Frances Spice lives and works in Cornwall and takes inspiration from her surroundings. She says ‘The Cornish countryside plays a part in my work, although it may not be apparent when you first take a glance at my pieces, however, when you look closely you can see the inspiration lies deep within the detail. My process is natural and constantly evolving, when you look back on my work you can see that it grows with me, changing with the fashion and my own personal taste as it develops.

Working from a summerhouse in my garden, my pots are handmade from slabs of white and black earthenware clay. My ceramic career started when I hand modelled figures and animals, a technique that I still use today as added detail on certain pieces. Often decorated with subtle colours and patterns, delicate lace is impressed onto the surface of the clay to create beautifully textured marks.

Each piece is carefully hand-painted with under-glazes and engobes. I also use various glazes, oxides, ceramic pencils and gold lustre to decorate my work. On certain pieces an organic food-safe beeswax is rubbed onto the exterior creating a slight sheen while still keeping the matt finish I prefer.’

Elizabeth Welch 

Elizabeth creates incredibly detailed glass sculptures of animals; particularly bird, insect and marine life. Each piece is handmade using coloured borosilicate glass rods. These are melted in a high temperature oxygen and propane flame. Each piece is annealed in an electrically controlled kiln for lasting strength and durability.

Over the past few years she has developed her own recognisable style of flame worked glass. Working from images of animals Elizabeth creates quirky and contemporary sculptures. Her work is highly collectable, with additions made yearly for customers to add to their collections.

Elizabeth works from her studio in Angmering, West Sussex.

Jade Tapson 

Jade’s artistic practice is an evolving exploration into the process of screen printing with glass powders, influenced by her interest in pattern and how it can combine aesthetic impact with cultural identity. Combining screen printing with the aerial technique, Jade creates intricate designs in which patterns can transform through the controlled entrapment of air within the glass.

​Jade studied at the University of Sunderland’s National Glass Centre graduating with a BA in Glass and Ceramics in 2014 and an MA in Glass in 2016. Since then, Jade has been awarded Second Prize in the CGS New Graduate Review 2016 and featured in the British Glass Biennale 2017 where she was awarded the Glass Sellers’ Student Prize as well as Craft & Design Magazine’s Highly Commended Award. In 2018, Jade featured in Concorso-35, Milan, and Bullseye’s prestigious Emerge/Evolve 2018 and two international competitions for emerging artists in glass. In addition to developing her own artistic practice, Jade also teaches screen printing courses as a private tutor.

Stuart Akroyd 

Stuart Akroyd is an award-winning studio glass designer-maker based in the UK. He creates forms in vibrant colours and organic shapes. Instantly identifiable, his work possesses a sense of movement and grace within the solid form. Stuart’s designs begin with inspiration from the world around him, after sketching out the initial ideas the next stage is experimenting with the hot glass and making 3D forms. These glass prototypes are then further refined to produce the final piece.

Stuart has been making glass for over 30 years. His glassmaking career began in the North East of England learning the basics on the BA(hons) course at the University of Sunderland, followed by a Post Graduate Diploma at the International Glass Centre, Brierley Hill. A stint as head maker at an established glass maker’s studio lead to starting his own business in 1991.

Lauren Frost

Lauren Frost Graduated from the University of Sunderland in 2020.  Based at National Glass Centre she studied on the BA (Hons) programme Artist Designer Maker: Glass and Ceramics.

Lauren’s ceramic practice is strongly influenced by a love for the natural environment. She throws delicate vessels on a potter’s wheel; sometimes functional and always decorative. Once fired, these vessels become a canvas, capturing the memory of a place. This collection of ceramics was fired in a protective fireclay box called a ‘saggar’ alongside natural materials including seaweed collected from Roker Beach.

Dokter and Misses 

Dokter and Misses is a multi-disciplinary product design company based in Johannesburg in South Africa. Their Hourglasses are produced in two shapes:
Bubbles and Still. Neither up nor down, they have a dual functionality depending on the whim of the drinker.

Each double-sided, recycled glass vessel is unique and is hand-blown by expert glassblowers at Ngwenya Glass, Eswatini.

You can view all of the work available and purchase them online here…

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