The International Festival of Glass and British Glass Biennale exhibition both return to Stourbridge for the third time next month, with events spread throughout the town’s historic glass quarter.
First held in 2004, the festival has quickly established itself as the UK’s leading contemporary glass event, offering a window on innovative use of the medium from around the world.
This year includes the world premiere of Tempestade, which is based on Shakespeare’s The Tempest and uses special shadow puppets and instruments made out of Portuguese glass. Another highlight promises to be the dramatic glass dresses by Diana Dias-Leao, displayed with glass jewellery, and a long-overdue retrospective exhibition for Keith Cummings, Britain’s most esteemed glass caster.
There will be one-day symposium investigating how designers dream up their designs and an international sculpture garden exploring themes of growth and cultural identity. Other elements include large scale installations, heritage walks, demonstrations, lectures, a bead fair, narrowboat rides, workshops, street entertainment and the now famous festival ale.
Festival masterclasses and workshops for both established and beginner glass artists take place from August 18-21 August with artists from Israel, Australia, USA, Egypt, India and Germany. This is followed by four packed days, from August 22-25, of events, exhibitions and have-a-go sessions in which everyone is welcome to take part.
The British Glass Biennale exhibition retains its position as the stunning highlight of the Festival. Featuring morte than 80 UK-based artists exhibiting a range of work including sculptures, installations, vessels and beads. Awarding £14,000 in prize money, it is now the largest selling exhibition of contemporary glass in the UK and attracts top collectors and enthusiasts from around the world. The exhibition opens on August 22 August at the Ruskin Glass Centre, Amblecote, and runs until September 28.
For details of the masterclasses and events programme visit www.ifg.org.uk ,email email@example.com or call 01384 399410, and to find out more about the British Glass Biennale exhibition and artists submissions visit www.biennale.org.uk