artist spotlight
Caterina Zucchi

share your creative practice:
in conversation with Caterina Zucchi

What does it mean to you to join the North Lands Creative network and be part of building a community for glass?

 

It’s the chance to show my vision about lampworked blown glass beads and glass jewels. It means sharing knowledge and inspiration. It means creating new possibilities for discovery and collaboration.

 

Tell us about your work. What influences translate into your art practice?

 

I gain inspiration from geometries, from the shadows of the objects, surrealist art, feelings, emotions and thoughts inside of me that I try to convey on my glass jewels.

 

Has this changed the way you approach your work?

 

No, this is the reason behind my work, very personal, bold and bulky.

 

What initially captured your imagination about glass?

 

The play between transparency, opacity and all the techniques who we can use to work glass and join them together to achieve the result I
want. Glass is very versatile and it gives us so many possibilities and solutions.

 

What’s the significance of the handmade to you?

 

Creating by hand is an intimate moment that allows me to isolate myself to feel perfectly connected with the world. It is an isolation that allows me to express myself, it is a full and rich moment.

 

What was your route to becoming an artist?

 

I’m still working on it. Sometimes I feel like an artist, but I let others define me. There is no a route, I think it is important to feel free to express oneself and have the courage of one’s actions and carry them all out. Any idea, even the smallest, can be the beginning of something extraordinary.

Carnivorous necklace stillife

What is your chosen medium and what are your techniques?

 

Murano Glass is the medium I have chosen. Mostly, I use lampworking technique but I also use cold working and sandblasting to add ‘special effects’ to my blown glass beads.

 

How would you describe your work and where do you think it fits within the sphere of contemporary glass?

 

It’s an intimate and instinctive work that can be admired as a sculpture or worn as a jewel. It can fit into various areas, it all depends on the context.

 

Tell us a bit about your process and what environment you like to work in?

 

I normally work at my own studio in Livorno, but I enjoy working in the studio of other artists to work on collaborative projects or sharing my ‘vision’ to students and beginners when I teach lampworked solid and blown beads.

I’m a lampworker but I like to define my process like a ‘mini furnace’ because I learned to blowing glass as a self-taught watching the furnace working process. I use a bench torch to melt glass and blow it. I don’t use any molds to create shapes and volumes. I don’t like drawing and I translate my ideas on a bead having the project on my mind and let it make it real from my head to my hand.

 

Who do you look up to when it comes to aesthetics?

 

Not to whom, but to what. To my personal taste and minimalism, but also to architecture and modular repetitions.

 

What currently inspires you and which other artists do you admire and why?

 

I do not admire a particular artist, but many or perhaps all those who have intuitions that I wish I had had not only in the field of glass, but in the various artistic fields.

 

How are you experiencing the Covid-19 pandemic in your country? To what extent has your everyday life as an artist changed in lockdown?

 

I’m living this time using all of my Plans B.
Learning new things, experimenting and researching. This period gives me the time to resume projects left aside and carry them out. During the lockdown I couldn’t get to my studio to work, so I tried to use this time to take part in online events, designing and studying glass. Everyday I used to photograph one of my creations from different points of view in the home environment that surrounded me to bring my work closer to the social media audience and to share this difficult moment.

Caterina Zucchi

I’m a researcher of forms, my creations have always been distinguished by this research, even in the period when I was a student. What I’ve found in glass and the glass blowing technique is the ideal and proper means to push this personal research forward. Creativity is an urgency, a spontaneous gesture, a moment, a mood. I’m not in search of the perfect glass bead, but of an object that is in harmony with the environment surrounding it, coherent and close to my creative impulse. I am a creator of glass jewels created not only to adorn the body, but to be a vehicle for emotions and information. A glass jewel becomes wearable art that allows people to have a unique and personal experience.

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