Glassblowing is an amazing art form which has been evolving for centuries, and has now been elevated to a place you’ll have to see to believe. If you have not been to a local contemporary art event, then you have been missing out, especially if they feature glass artwork. At Shades Of Ngwenya we specialise in glassblowing, handcrafted custom trophies & medals. So we have put together some cool facts that we think you should know about glassblowing!
Volcanoes and lightning bolts were the first glassblowers.
In order to transform raw materials into glass, things need to be heated up to extremely high temperatures. For a better understand of how hot the temperature needs to be in order to create glass, nature originally made it in one of two ways. The first way glass was made, was when lightning struck sand, which sometimes fused it into slender glass tubes called fulgurites. The second way, is via a volcanic eruption, which sometimes fused rocks and sand together into a glass called obsidian.
Glassblowing is as old as the Roman Empire.
Glassblowing originated in the first century before the common era, which actually coincided with the establishment of the Roman Empire. Due to the fact that it appeared at this point in history, it made it easier for glassblowing to spread more quickly, and became all the more popular.
Mold-blowing and free-blowing are the two major methods of glassblowing now.
These days there are two major methods of glassblowing; mold-blowing and free-blowing. Mold-blowing, involves placing a glob of molten glass on the end of a blowpipe, and inflating it into a wooden or metal carved mold. This means that the texture of the bubble of glass is determined by the design on the interior of the mold, rather than the blower’s skill. On the other hand, free-blowing involves blowing short puffs into a molten portion of glass, which has been spooled at one end of the blowpipe.