A clear idea then also followed his steps during his first creative realization in Karlsbad. Openly and with modesty, Frantisek speaks about his perception of glass, the work in Moser glassworks as well as the newly born limited edition Merano POP …
Frantisek, you are 23yo and you already celebrate success with your work. Do you enjoy to constantly search for new opportunities and challenges?
The work with glass is a challenge in itself. I enjoy and feel to be fulfilled by working with a material offering so many possibilities that cannot be easily exhausted. The relationship with glass is a never-ending exploration. I love its malleability through heat, as well as the possibilities it offers with dressing and polishing in cold. The artistic world, as I perceive it, is full of searching, finding and travelling – it feels good to be part of it.
What was your journey right to this field?
Already at the secondary business school in Trebon (specialization: glass painting), I made it clear which way to go in my further studies. Studio of Glass at the Academy of Arts, Architecture & Design in Prague was the choice number one. However, originally, it all started with my family already. The glassworks in Vimperk had been long shut down before I was even born. My first contact with glass was, therefore, via my grandfather – a glasscutter, who provided the family with a range of glass decorations. It might have been back then that I started to love this material.
You have already had a chance to work on a number of projects during your studies. Is the cooperation with Moser glassworks different in any respect?
Every project is different – the designer has to communicate with the glassworks, with the professionals in it, but also with clients from completely different domains. All of them have distinct requirements, provide different conditions and have unlike taste. Each individual project, therefore, brings a lot of new experience, which I appreciate the most. In most cases, I work on particular assignment following client’s wishes, but with Moser, I carried out my own ideas.
I had a chance to cooperate more closely with Moser glassworks earlier already thanks to the former head designer Lukas Jaburek. Moser glassworks allowed me to work on my dream project (Birth of the Future behind Glass) that would, without their help (and without the support of Letech Design, AAD and CZDW), remained a sketch on paper only. The installation has had two successful presentations already – in London and Milan and the Czech premier took place at Czech Design Week. The version with robotic arm will be presented at this year’s Designblok as part of the Robotico Studio, AAD.
There is one important aspect your work shares with Moser glass – the colours. In Carlsbad, however, you have not started from the batching workshop. You have chosen a very classical, transparent design of the Merano vase and applied the colours on its surface with the technique of air brush. How did you come up with such idea?
The colour palette, luxury design and flawless craft execution – those are the aspects that have fascinated me about Moser glass and I have always looked up to them. For my project, I was looking for the most representative Czech glassworks with a very traditional product. I found this in Moser and its Merano crystal vase.
The handmade – blown, cut and painted vases with golden lister and golden stripe, made according to the traditional craft processes and elaborating on the 18th and 19th century aesthetics are, in my project, subjected to other process, which redesigns them and provides with other time as well as conceptual levels. The objects are also part of a performance during which the shine of the crystal is being gradually complemented with colour.
What was the reaction of the master glassworkers or the batchmakers, who normally create the colours?
I spoke with some of them only. In general, I was pleased with the interest in my ideas and the results. Of course, negative opinion occurred as well. However, I have studied the craft myself and I follow all of its rules, I admire and respect the work of skilful glassworkers, and work accordingly on my own projects. The quality of the craft and its details are the key points for me always.
How was the work at the furnaces in Carlsbad? Is there anything you took over to you own career?
I very much enjoyed the patterning process in Karlsbad. Moser glassworkers are very experienced, with lots of love for the craft and personal stories. For the first time, I tried the underlaying technique and it appealed to me so much that I used it for my other collection, which is now becoming very successful.
What are your next opportunities and challenges?
Right now, it is Designblok, where the Merano POP vases made in cooperation with Moser will be at display. Moreover, in December, I am going to present my new collection at Czech Design Week, the design festival. Apart from the work on my bachelor thesis, I also prepare several other exhibitions, such as the installation at Café Louvre, which will show both my authorial collections and the limited edition Merano POP as part of celebration of 30th anniversary of the Freedom and Democracy Day as well as of the International Students‘ Day.
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