ELEMENTS OF INTERACTIVITY
Works in glass by Louis Thompson Louis Thompson is one of the most exciting glass artists working in Britain today who uses his investigative skill to playfully explore new ways of creating aesthetic works in glass. Profile by Cathryn Shilling.
LOUIS Thompson originally went to Staffordshire University to become a product designer; a chance introduction to the glass department captured his imagination and he never looked back. He graduated in 1988, initially working with kiln-formed glass and it was his first job as a hot shop assistant that took him down a different career path. The production environment instilled an appreciation of craftsmanship, the repetitive rhythm embedded a deep understanding of the material and enabled him to acquire and develop his skills. Working as part of a team continues to inform the making and creative process and this is an inspirational driving force in his practice.
A scholarship to attend Pilchuck Glass School in 1999 for the Masterclass led by Peter Novotny and Borek Sipek was a pivotal moment in his creative development. It opened his eyes to new ways of production and the scope of working expressively with glass. This experience led to his first major collection, “Screaming Heads”, which are direct, literal, playful and humorous pieces, with an innate freshness still relevant today. In 1995 Thompson returned to Staffordshire University as a part-time Senior Lecturer on the Glass degree course. Alongside the teaching, he pursued his own creative practice, returning to Pilchuck Glass School as a Teaching Assistant in 2001. Since then, Thompson has led a number of Masterclasses in the UK.
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