Black Bark Bottle
This is a Black Bark Bottle. The organic striped patterns of the peeling bark on the Silver Birch. This is one of my favourite trees. It is a tree native to the British Isles. It has always fascinated me, since I first saw these in Scotland, as a boy. This is the source of my inspiration for the “Bark” series. The form mirrors the tall, slender shape of these trees, swaying in the wind. My surface treatment of distressed silver leaf echoes the natural patterns of the bark. The Silver Birch is very similar to the Aspen tree in appearance, but the bark of the Aspen lies flat and doesn’t peel off
I blow each vessel individually and no two are the same. Halfway through the blowing process, while the hot glass vessel is still on the end of the blowpipe, I apply several layers of pure silver leaf. Then fuse I these onto the surface at temperatures between 500 and 900 degrees Celsius. Next, I transfer the vessel to a finishing iron. Through a process of re-heating and shaping, I gradually stretch the tall neck aware from the wider base to create the finished form. The final part of the hot process is to accentuate the pattern. I do this by burnishing the silver with an oxy-propane flame, using the flame as if it were a paint-brush. This is not only dramatic but exciting as the pattern emerges.
The bark bottles are more decorative than functonal and look good in groups as well as individually. Interior designers love them!