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The History of Blown Glass Bowls & Vases

Have you ever seen a beautiful glass bowl or vase and wondered how it was made? It’s actually quite a fascinating process. Blown glass is created when hot glass is blown into a mold or shape. This technique has been used for centuries, and the results can be truly stunning. If you’re interested in learning more about blown glass bowls and vases, keep reading. In this article, you’ll learn some of the history behind this art form.

What Is Glass Blowing?

Glass blowing is a glass-forming technique that involves inflating molten glass into a bubble, with the aid of a blowpipe (or blow tube). A person who blows glass is called a glassblower, glass smith, or gaffer.

Glassblowing can be performed using a wide variety of techniques and tools, depending on the desired finished product. A furnace or hot plate is used to melt the glass stock, which is then gathered on the end of a blowpipe. Once gather has been applied to the blowpipe, it is then inflated and shaped into either a balloon shape (for blown glassware) or cylinder (for solid glassware).

When Did The Art Of Glass Blowing Begin?

The history of glass blowing dates back to the first century AD when glass was first made with the blowpipe. In the glass blowing process, a piece of glass is heated until it is soft enough to be blown into a shape. The glassblower then uses a blowpipe to inflate the glass and shape it into the desired form.

First To Fourth Century A.D.

The earliest known glass blowing technique was found in the Roman text Naturalis Historia, written in the first century AD by Pliny the Elder. This technique called for mixing two parts sand with one part ashes and heating the mixture until it melted. Once melted, the glass was then blown into shape using a blowpipe.

Glass blowing soon spread to Syria and Egypt, where artisans began to produce decorated glassware. By the fourth century AD, glass blowing had reached China, where it was used to create beakers and bowls.

Phoenician, Egyptian, And Roman Glassmakers

The first glassblowers were the Phoenicians, a civilization that existed around 1200 BC. These glassmakers used a technique called “core forming.” This involves creating a glass object around a metal core. Once the glass was blown and cooled, the metal core was removed, leaving behind a hollow glass shell.

The Phoenicians were not the only ancient civilization to engage in glassblowing. The Egyptians, who also had a rich history of glassmaking, used a similar technique to create glass beads and other objects. Around 100 BC, the Romans began using glassblowing to create bowls, vases, and other vessels.

Glass Blowing In Europe

The history of glass blowing in Europe begins in the early 13th century when glassmakers in Venice perfected a glass-forming technique that involved spinning molten glass into thin sheets. This technique, known as glass casting, allowed for the production of large quantities of glassware. In the centuries that followed, glass casting became increasingly popular and spread throughout Europe.

Venetian Glassmakers

By the end of the 13th century, Venetian glassmakers had developed a new glass-blowing technique that allowed them to create complex shapes. This technique, which involves inflating molten glass into a bubble, quickly became popular and spread throughout Europe. In the centuries that followed, glass blowers continued to experiment with new techniques and designs, resulting in the production of a wide variety of glassware.

Today, glass blowing is still used to create a variety of glass products, including bowls, vases, and other decorative items. While the history of glass blowing dates back centuries, the artistry and craftsmanship of glassblowers continue to evolve, making blown glass a timeless and popular material.

The Middle Ages And Renaissance

Glassblowing continued to be popular throughout the Middle Ages and Renaissance. By the 17th century, glassblowing was a well-established art form. In 1688, the English glassmaker George Ravenscroft invented lead glass, which made glass stronger and more durable.

Blown glass bowls and vases are often used as decorative items or functional objects. Some glassblowers even create entire sculptures out of blown glass. The history of glassblowing is a long and fascinating one, spanning thousands of years and cultures.

The Marshall Gallery 2

By Dru Bloomfield – https://www.flickr.com/photos/athomeinscottsdale/3836187025/in/photostream/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=95427764

Were There Any Threats To Glass Blowing As A Craft?

The history of glass blowing is a long and fascinating one. It is believed that the art form originated in Syria, and then spread to Egypt and Rome. From there, it made its way to Asia and eventually Europe.

During the height of the Roman Empire, glass blowing was a highly prized skill. In fact, many of the most beautiful and intricate glass pieces from that era were created by master glassblowers.

However, glass blowing also has a dark side. In the Middle Ages, the art form was associated with witchcraft and magic. This led to many glassblowers being persecuted during that time period.

It wasn’t until the Renaissance that glass blowing regained its status as a respected art form. During this time, glassblowers began to create intricate pieces that were highly sought after by the upper class.

Today, glass blowing is still considered to be an art form. Although it has lost some of its popularity over the years, there are still many glassblowers who create beautiful and unique pieces.

Glass blowing is an art form that has been around for centuries. It takes a lot of skill and practice to create beautiful pieces of glassware. Blown glass bowls and vases are popular items in the home décor market, and people are always looking for new and unique designs. If you’re interested in learning more about blown glass or purchasing some beautiful pieces, please give us a call today. We would be happy to chat with you about our selection and answer any questions you may have.

Are You Looking for Contemporary Art to Complement Your Home?

The Marshall Gallery, located in Scottsdale’s Historic Arts District, has been the center of contemporary art since its founding in 1998. Boasting a collection of paintings, sculptures, and exquisite glass pieces, the gallery hosts several exhibitions each year plus a biennial glass invitational that attracts top-notch talent. Here you will find exceptional art presented in an open and relaxed gallery space, which is perfect for browsing the ever-changing collection. Explore on your own, or allow our expert art consultants to offer complimentary assistance to find the perfect addition to your own collection. Looking for the perfect piece of art to complement your home’s decor? Visit us in person or browse our online art store!