Reflections: a Glance into Habatat Galleries’ Glass Artwork Collection

Established in a suburb of Detroit, Michigan, Habatat Galleries is the oldest and largest gallery specializing in glass art. Since 1971, the gallery’s passion for glass sculpture has allowed them to display and sell art from the best glass artists around the globe. Since its establishment, the gallery has opened an additional location in West Palm Beach, Florida. Another location in Winston Salem, North Carolina, is set to open later this month. With over 40,000 Instagram followers, Habatat Galleries seeks to showcase a wide range of styles—from art déco to minimalism—within their extensive collection of incredible glass artwork.

Martin Rosol’s glass sculptures are described as “monuments to light”. Working with multidimensional geometric solids and varying levels of transparency within the glass, Rosol hails from the traditional Czech glass industry. Like many artists from the Czech Republic, Rosol learned his craft in a company school for manufacturing glass art. Constrained by the industry’s rigid expectations, Rosol created vases and other forms of functional art during the day, bringing home scraps to create his own abstract pieces at home. Not long after experimenting with abstract glass sculpture, Rosol’s work exhibited in Europe and the United States. His work is elegant, architectural, and becomes magical in the presence of light, making his pieces true masterpieces of glass work. 

Hailing from Sofia, Bulgaria, Latchezar Boyadjiev’s glass sculptures display the sensual and dynamic lines of the human form. Boyadjiev’s process is intricate. He begins by drawing his sculpture in charcoal, creating a preliminary clay model based on the drawing. From there, Boyadjiev begins the tedious process of creating his glass sculptures. This gradual evolution of the sculpture is evident in his work’s ethereal details of light and shadow. 

Hannah Gibson studied geology at the University of Edinburgh and became fascinated by minerals and compounds, leading to her passion for the alchemy of glass. Gibson creates interesting Lego-esque figures from 100% recycled glass and found objects, reflecting childhood nostalgia and happiness through each unique sculpture. Though the pieces in Gibson’s Sweet Nothings collection are relatively small compared to other glass artworks, they embody the joy of childhood and the incredible things that can be achieved by recycling. 

 Ingrid Rachova & David Suchoparek (IRDS) are a Czech art duo that works with color, dimension, and reflection in their glass sculptures. Like Rosol, they come from a country with great cultural significance surrounding the creation and appreciation of glass artwork. Their work is incredibly fascinating in the way it reflects both light and color. The colors are vibrant and rich, and each piece is unique and fresh. In their own words, the duo states, “We love colour, blending, graduating, reflective, soft and sparkling. However we use it, we create inner dimensions and new colour spaces in our work.”

Mauves Float

Toland Sand is a self-taught and internationally recognized glass artist that has been working in the industry since 1977. Sand uses dichroic glass and polished crystal in his work. Dichroic glass has the ability to reflect multiple colors in different lighting conditions. Therefore, Sand’s work is colorful, rich, and intricate. After spending many years in Athens, as well as being in close proximity to an ancient marble quarry, Sand gains some of his artistic inspiration from ancient architecture. Like architecture, Sand’s work features a colorful central object inside the glass, with intricate surrounding “exits” throughout the piece. 

Finally, up-and-coming glass artist Zoe Woods is a master of endless optical illusions. Based in Adelaide, Australia, Woods’ work is incredibly complex. It features repeated patterns and colorful reflections, reminiscent of a kaleidoscope. Employing hot and cold glass-making techniques, Woods allows for serendipitous chances and depth to enter her artwork. Her work provides optical pleasure to viewers, allowing them to be drawn in by multiple associations and mesmerizing visions. 

In short, glass art provides a fresh perspective to sculpture. Created with care, skill, and patience, each piece of glass art is truly a masterpiece. The most intriguing aspect of glass sculpture for viewers is its ability to transform when exposed to light. Shadows and refractions shift the piece into a new sculpture with each beam of light, creating an endlessly inspiring and immersive experience. 

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