The book is well-made with a clear lay-out, hard cover and good texts.
But the book -with the large glass crocodile on its cover - also shows the uncomprehended notions of modern and contemporary glass. Not the amount of entries is dictating quality or the amount of work to make the objects, but only the knowledge of the judges on contemporary art as that discipline is used by many galleries, museums and organizations worldwide.
Also the division in the various chapters shows unclear arguments. Especially as Ann Vanlatum remarks in her essay “…. Glass, in other words, has become an integral part of contemporary art. It is not merely the processing techniques that take center stage here….”.
After the text pages with works illustrating the authors’ choices by Klaus Weschenfelder, Sven Hauschke, Jutta-Annette Page, Anne Vanlatum, Sasanne Jøker Johnsen, Milan Hlaves and Peter Layton, the pages on the Prizewinners follow. The book is organized with a large photo of the exhibited works and a short description of the work per page for each of all the chosen works in the chapters: Technical aspects with blown glass, pâte de verre, lamp work, glass painting, engraved and cut glass, optical glass and optical phenomena; sculpture with figurative work, cast glass, sculptural objects and materiality; wall objects; illuminated objects (I think the author means lighting objects); concept art – mixed media and performance – interactive concepts are followed with the artists’ biographies, terms and conditions of the competition and a register. I would prefer instead of this easy-like format a clear classification by content or an alphabetical order by the artist’s names.
The catalogue is a must for studying what is the position of the Studio glass and to discuss the subject and the concept of competitions as that debate is going on since the first edition in 1977. And, of course to enjoy the good works in the catalogue and exposition as art is not a thing, but a way.
Angela van der Burght