Tasmanian Glass Blowers assistant Rhys Tanton helps owner James Dodson create a free-form wine glass.EMBERS were last week blazing with purpose inside Breadalbane’s Tasmanian Glass Blowers headquarters as glass artist James Dodson worked his magic.
Dodson, and assistant Rhys Tanton, were busy creating hand-made wine glasses when The Examiner dropped by on Thursday.
The business, started by Dodson in 1983, is persevering in the face of an economic downturn, with hand-made glasses and Dodson’s famous glass animals proving to be as popular as ever.
“I’ve been in my Tasmanian Glass Blowers business for 30 years, and I’ve been blowing the glass for 34 or so,” he said.
“It’s one of those things you have to keep practising.”
Dodson said it was a fascination with molten glass that helped maintain his passion.
“The glass, molten glass, is a dynamic, fascinating material, when it cools down it doesn’t crystalise, so we’re able to blow it – it just cools down and stays liquid,” he said.
“We’re so familiar with glass, it’s such a common material, but we see it as a cold, brittle and fragile material, to seeing it hot is often a revelation for people when they come into the workshop.”
The variety of techniques is staggering, something which Dodson said would take more than a couple of lifetimes to master.
“It’s also about personal concentration and relying on skills developed over the years, and we still don’t always get it right,” he laughed.
The workshop is open to visitors from 10am Monday to Friday.
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