Sinter: The unassuming skill of kiln-glass sculpture and design (Neues Glas)

by Michael Endo

Neues Glas - No. 1/2020


A single crushed shard of glass softens when heated. The jagged irregular surface rounds. If it is just the right size, it will not pool or flow, but instead will pull itself together, transforming the fractured surface into a seamless, polished sphere. Placed within a mold along with other spheres or grains of glass and again gently heated, these individual glass shapes will become one in a process called sintering. This is the underlying technique in the work of artist and designer Joshua Kerley. By delicately arranging or packing glass particles into a mold and taking the glass through carefully controlled heating cycles, Kerley has developed a diverse body of sculptural and design work that upends established material hierarchies determined by scarcity or value, and reassesses traditional glass making in playful and unexpected ways. By using techniques such as pâte de verre, Kerley explores what he refers to as the “metamorphic capabilities” of glass to generate textures and colors that are “un-glasslike” and often mimic other “lower value” materials such as brick or polystyrene.


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February 27, 2020