Monday, October 15, 2012

October 15: inspiration in many forms...

Yesterday was a rejuvenating day for both of us.  We had a chance to be inspired and celebrate.  First we started with the Richmond Folk Festival.  We ended up only having an hour, but it was wonderful to sit and listen to swing music for that bit of time.  Next year we hope to see more!

Views of the River from Brown’s Island:

On the way home, we noticed that there were tents set up outside the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.  After relaxing for a few minutes, we decided to walk down and see what was going on.  We happened to walk up right as glass artist Ryan Gothrup was beginning a demonstration.  He was making a glass turtle.
He started off with a ball (not sure about the correct terms here…) of glass, which he then proceeded to texture with a mold and blow into a ball.

Then he split the ball open to form the top of the shell:

He then proceeded to attach the four claws, the head, and the tail to the underside of the shell.  You can see him working on the head here.  The glass was a different color in the head because it was hotter at that point.

The last thing he did was make a flat piece for the stomach of the turtle:

To attach it to the turtle, he just kind of set the turtle down on top and smooshed.

Here’s the finished turtle!

Here’s a similar turtle that was already finished.  The one he was working on had to cool slowly in a special box so that it wouldn’t crack.  I believe Ryan said that the main furnace was around 2100 degrees - glass has to cool down from 900 degrees (the approximate temperature after the piece is done) to room temperature over 8 or 9 hours.

Some other glass pieces:

Ryan was there because there is an exhibition opening next week from glass artist Chihuly.  He already installed a few pieces, including the glass sculpture in the pool outside:

One of his more classic glass chandeliers:

After all this, we had a date – dinner and ice cream.  Some of our views along the way:

The foliage is beautiful this year!  I’m thinking maybe a quilt soon in these colors…

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