International Symposium of Engraved Glass

Published by Ainsley Francis on

The dust has settled, and we’re all back home after the 6th International Symposium of Engraved Glass. While it was smaller than previous years, it was still a valuable time for those of us who spend out days with our noses (literally) to grindstones to meet other people from around the world who are have similar practices. It was a week of meetings, presentations, conversation, and factory visits, that allowed us to meet people who we had only known from their work and re-connect with old friends.

Much of the time was spend working together, sharing the large engraving studio at the Glass School at Kamenický Šenov, while also having access to other facilities in the school. The school is the oldest glass school in the world, opening is 1856, and had hosted the International Symposium of Engraved Glass since 1996. This year 22 people were invited to participate in the week long program, which was split evenly between students, local engravers, and engravers from abroad, we were joined by a larger group for the weekend program as well.

Tuesday presentations were informative and inspiring, a particular highlight was Wilhelm Vernim’s presentation about the exhibition of work by Josef Welzel that is currently on at the Glas Museum Rheinbach. It will be open until October 19th. Wednesday afternoon we all piled onto a bus to visit local glass and engraving studios in the area, including Jiří Pačinek’s StudioJiří Tesař’s Studio and Kolektiv Ateliers.

Thursday was mostly dedicated to work, madly finishing our objects for the immanent exhibition, but in the afternoon we were invited to visit the home and studio of René Roubíček and Miluše Roubíčková, and did manage to fit in a rousing game of Pétanque, and a BBQ in the park.

On Friday, after spending the day in the engraving studio, we had a series of Pecha Kuchas, where each participant gave a presentation of their work in 10 slides and 2 minutes, then we moved on to a meeting about future events, such as the upcoming Wanderaustellung that will start in spring 2015 (more on that in a future post.) In the evening we were invited to Mr Rath’s house for a garden party, despite the rain, we still had a lovely time, and learned about possible future plans for Jiří Harcuba’s birth home in Harrachově (more to come later on that as well.)

Saturday was a day of celebrations. It was an open day not just for us, but for the community in general at the glass school and at Preciosa Lighting Company, we got to explore the giant metal and glass working facilities. After lunch we had the opening of the exhibition that displays the work made by the participants of the Symposium at the Museum of Glass in Kamenický Šenov, which houses one of the largest collections of engraved glass in the world. The show is on display until November 30th 2014. We has a continued meeting about future events, and then ended the event with a closing party and awards ceremony.

Sunday some of us gathered to drive to Sazava for the opening of the  Jiří Harcuba Exhibit at the glassworks there.

On Saturday morning, we played a game like an Exquisite Corpse, where about six of us engraved two pieces of overlay glass in one-minute intervals, so I’ll leave you with some pictures of that:

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