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Photos: Magic inside a glassblower's studio

See how artists turn hot molten glass into perfectly shaped pieces of art.


May 2, 2017 | Latest Photo Prev Next
A glassblower spins a plate.A glassblower spins a plate.Photo: Ilana E. Strauss
May 2, 2017 | Latest Photo

Glassblowing has always seemed to me like the most mysterious kind of art, both because glass things can look otherworldly, and because I literally had no idea how anyone could blow into glass and make a shape. So I visited G Studio, a glassblowing studio in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv, where artists Maayan Feigin and Boris Shpeizman make their own works of art and teach classes.

Glass being molded in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

I watched Feigin take a chunk of molten glass and turn it into a perfect glass plate.

Kiln in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Once glass is out of the kiln for a few minutes, it cools down and stops being malleable, a little like candle wax. So Feigin had to keep putting it back in.

Spinning a plate in a glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

The end result was a perfect glass plate ... which she immediately smashed and threw away, since she didn't need another plate, and this one was likely to shatter.

sticks in a glassblower's studio(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

The studio was filled with various pieces of glass – from sticks to bowls to animals.

Clown in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Glassblowing has been around for a very long time. Some of the earliest evidence of glassblowing actually comes from Jerusalem from 37 to 4 B.C. Archaeologists there found garbage from an ancient glass shop, including glass rods, tubes and bottles.

Wall in a glassblower studio. (Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Glass eye in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

The Roman Empire really took to glassblowing, and they helped spread the art around the world. Glassblowing has grown incredibly complex, which you can probably tell by looking at G Studio. So look some more!

Glass pieces in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Glass jellyfish in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Tools in a glassblower studio.

(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

Glass head in glassblower studio.(Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

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