Sunday, 24 July 2016

Failed glass vase

This should have been a beautiful vase. In frosted, sugar like semi-translucent light blue glass.
With yellow and red patterned bulbs sticking out.
Made in a difficult, elaborate and expensive glass fabrication method called "pâte de verre".

In a few pictures I can show you the procedure: first you make the model in clay, then you cast a mixture of gypsum and silicosis around, to produce the mold.
The second picture shows the mold, after two weeks of drying, and after I removed the clay model.
The third picture shows how to fill the mold: the holes are filled with fine-ground powder-like red and yellow glass, held together with wallpaper glue.
Then adding layers of sand like glassparticles, size about 1-2 mm. again bound  by glue. The total thickness is about 5-6mm, made in two layers.

As the glass would sink to the bottom when heated, I had to make an inner mold as well. In this case by adding pure loose gypsum in the middle, lightly compacted (picture 4). We had to wait a few weeks to have it dry again, and finally it went into the oven.
But..... it failed. The glass did not melt enough, the top ring was okay, but the lower parts fell apart when I removed the mold (picture 5).

Here you see the remnants of what should have been a lovely vase.
All that's left is a glass crown, which I show at the top. Just to show how it could have looked like.

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