Using traditional methods first developed over 2000 years ago, Peter Gudrunas is a master glassblower working in an ancient art, forming contemporary glass that is prized for its classic beauty. At his studio near the shores of Lake Erie, he begins with raw materials such as powdered quartz and limestone, measures, mixes and refines them in a furnace powered at temperatures in excess of 2400 degrees Fahrenheit. One of the few glassblowers in North America to still make the majority of his glass from scratch, and working from an old handwritten recipe book, much of Peter's glass colours are unique to his practice, each piece is subtly different from the next.
Working with hand tools, the glass is shaped while molten. Peter says of his craft; "To work with glass is to work with light, both reflected and refracted. I draw inspiration from the glass itself- the material is fluid and transforms from something very responsive to something very fragile. It has its own unyielding rules- I have to stop when the piece is 'right.' It requires a certain kind of flexibility that can continually lead down new paths. Even an imperfection can lead to an entire new series of objects." In our technologically sophisticated time, glass retains even more of its historic mystery- every piece is made by hand and will never be duplicated.