Essays

2006

2004

Ruminations about Craft

by Philip Baldwin

Craft is one of those words full of shadings with various meanings and implications. In its most primary sense, we may say that most of us are bad craftspeople at a lot of what we do, but many of us get good at one or a few things we do. These are often referred to as hobbies. Occasionally they are a way of life, a career, a life's work.

Venini - The Heart of Glass

I was struck by the mysterious plasticity and the clean lines of the works of Monica and Philip from the very first time I saw them in Frankfurt in 1994. A mixture of Nordic severity and Mediterranean colour, it was difficult to define which tradition the works actually belonged to, for they seemed to bring together the rational characteristics of the Scandinavian tradition and the superb craftsmanship of the Master glass-blowers in Murano.

2002

Battuto 2002

The Italian verb, battere, the action of repeated strokes, is used in so many ways—as surface decoration, as a technique for working metal, as a marker of rhythm, as an indicator of life in heartbeat or pulse rate, as a marker of continuous striving, as a description of a good dunning, or as a gauge of approval in applause. How appropriate that one of its derivatives is the title of this show. Monica Guggisberg and Philip Baldwin’s work embodies so many of its elusive and seemingly contradictory connotations that rather than just describing a technique for working glass “battuto” signifies a way of being, a way of breathing, and expresses the beat of life.

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