There's a chance to catch not one but four exhibitions at the Red House Glass Cone at this year’s International Festival of Glass.
The main event will be Boda Builders, a selection of pieces by some of Sweden’s most high profile glass artists. The artists are all members of The Glass Factory, a working museum and glass centre which promotes creative and innovative developments in glass. Pieces include a glass jack in the box, melted glass ice creams and deflated glass balloons.
Haybridge High School’s current sixth form makes another return visit with its Arts Award exhibition. The bronze Arts Award is a nationally recognised award aimed at the under 25s to help them develop their art skills. To achieve the award, participants take part in an arts activity they enjoy, go to an arts event, research their arts inspiration and share their skills with others. The young people worked for a week in the cone’s education studio. They were taught how to cut, slump, fuse and engrave glass and they interviewed artists on this site and at the White House Cone. On the final day each taught to a group of year eight students, sharing what they’d learnt. Their finished pieces will be on display at the cone until the end of the month.
The council’s adults and community learning team is staging an exhibition by its adult learners who have been learning about the occupations of their Black Country ancestors. Learners have developed their knowledge and used it creatively to paint artistic images of Dudley rich industrial heritage onto glass. The art work highlights glassblowing, chain and nail making, coal mining and canal occupations. They also learned about the history of glass and its legacy to past, present and future generations of borough residents and visitors. Their artwork will be on display throughout the festival.
Dudley’s geological history will be celebrated with a small exhibition focussing on the area’s renowned rocks and fossils, taking in the wider Black Country Geopark as well as Dudley’s own particular geology, which will compliment a talk by Graham Worton, Keeper of Geology on Friday 23 August. The Black Country Bostin Fittle tan and talk will look at the borough’s remarkable geology underneath and the role it played in the glassmaking, all after a heart portion of faggots and peas, a glass of wine or pint of beer or cuppa. Times are 5pm-6pm for the fittle and 6pm-7pm for the talk. Places cost £15 per person and should be pre-booked on 01384 812750.
Pieces from the museum’s collection will be taking a little holiday of their own when Wordsley’s own Lace Guild stages an exhibition inspired by pieces of glass from the collection. ‘pLACEmaking’ which runs at the guild’s home at the Hollies, 53 Audnam will showcase spectacular examples of glass complimented by lace from the Lace Guild. It runs until 27 September.
To find out more about the range of activities, exhibitions, events and have a go sessions running at the cone over the Bank Holiday Weekend search IFOG on dudley.gov.uk