Milky Way – Glass 2007

United in their long tradition in crafts, glass and iron still could hardly more oppose one another. One exemplifies fragility and transparence; the other metallic strength. Swedish artist Jan Lambert Kruse playfully uses these oppositions to create his fantastic glass objects.

Relying on the most basic shapes of the materials, his organic sculptures remind of natural phenomena. In “Milky Way”, a swirl of frosted glass bulbs lined up on spiralling metal threads flows in the air. It is surrounded by multicoloured spheres, imitating an imaginary universe. While in this piece the metal plays a supporting role, more complicated forms like the bubbly “Cocoon”-series shape the glass with a cage made of iron threads. The glass is frozen just as it begins to expand, displaying the restricting forces of metal.

Jan Lambert Kruse’s objects position themselves somewhere between applied and fine art. His working methods of welding iron and blowing glass are deeply rooted in traditional craft. Iron thread moulds, for example, have long been used for manufacturing lamps in Italy. However Kruse’s works often refuse any application. Some of his sculptures have lights inside, some don’t. What is for sure is that they capture a mystical atmosphere, paying tribute to the forces and secrets of nature.

Jan Lambert Kruse, born in Stockholm in 1962, studied metal craft at the Konstfack University College of Arts, Design and Craft in Stockholm. After his specialisation in glass and ceramics, he expanded his knowledge of the material at the Pilchuck Glass School in the US. Important shows include the International Exhibition of Glass in Japan, the Sassoulo Glass exhibition and several solo exhibitions in Sweden.

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