Laurel has really just been my saviour this last six months. One of the toughest thing about moving back to Melbs from Adelaide, was who was I going to work with? Laurel and I started to share some sessions and work for each other, now we work together on a regular basis at least one day a week, more if one of us has jobs on or deadlines to meet. Like me, Laurel did her training at the Jam (we just missed each other in Adelaide!) for me this always speaks volumes on someones skills and work ethic. When it boils down to it, we have both been trained as glass blowers in the same way and it makes it so easy to work together. She knows how to bring a good jack heat, has that production hustle and pretty much is just an excellent person! She is a super skilled up glass blower, has been assisting Nick Wirdham for years, is the Ausglass president, a studio tenant at Blue Dog, I could go on! For someone with such a long list of achievements behind her, she is what I would call a beautiful, humble lady. (she also has a rad dog that she brings to work everytime with her and now I think we are pals because I share my crackers with her...)
I feel really lucky for our paths to have crossed (the number of times this girl has saved my arse, "Laurel do you have any bronze I could borrow?") and there is no way I could have made it through these last months without her. So go make yourself a cup of tea and get to know this rad gal of glazz a little better...
Gals of Glazz
Tune in for 10
1. Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Laurel Kohut, and I'm a glass artist from Melbourne, Victoria.
2. What do you make?
My artwork is focussed around the idea of sentimental objects - things that people get attached to and have some sort of emotional investment. Recently I have been using the aesthetic forms of jewellery but increasing the scale to the point where they are non-functional. I like the viewer to be able to recognise and relate to the sculptural forms and hopefully engage in a dialogue regarding these sentimental things.
3. Why do you make?
It's a curiosity I've had since I was a child. I always loved to paint, draw, stick things together, take things apart and rebuild things. I have always had an interest in objects too. I love antiques and the stories and history they have. I actually feel very privileged to be able to make objects for a living. I often wonder what kind of lives my objects have had once they venture out into the world..
4. What’s you colour palette?
I like fresh, candy colours. Not too bright though! And I tend to mix different tones of the same colour.
5. What’s your proudest achievement?
I think anytime you can look at a piece you have made and think 'I'm completely happy with that, there's nothing I would change if I could' - is a proud moment. (It doesn't happen to me very often as I'm very self critical!) Also, I just recently became a full time artist which has been a big scary step for me but also fulfilling.
6. Hot or Cold?
I like it both ways!
I'm trained as a hot glass artist, but my work seems to come to life in the cold shop. I just love how you can completely change a blown glass object through cold working.
7. What’s your dream project?
I have so many!
Building my own hot shop, having more solo exhibitions, creating large scale installations and to be able to keep supporting myself through making glass.
8. What’s your influences?
I am influenced by the material itself. I've never grown bored of glass.
I am also influenced by other objects and sculptures - not necessarily glass, but things that have a personal history or a story to tell.
Other artists who have influenced me are:
Nick Wirdnam - who has a similar interest in objects but also creates and arranges his work with the most extraordinary sensibility.
Nick Mount - who's methods of working glass have directly influenced my own.
Kristin McFarlene - her work really speaks to me on an emotional level.
9. What’s coming up for you? Or what are you looking forward to?
I'm looking forward to blowing more glass with Amanda Dziedzic as my blowing buddy!
Currently I have lots of Christmas production work to make, but when I get through that I am hoping to continue working on a new body of exhibition work which revolves around the theme of time and the pocket watch. Stay tuned..!
10. If you could only eat 3 foods for the rest of your life what would they be?
My dad's apple pie. 😀
(Laurel in her other natural habitat; the cold shop! One day when I'm rich and famous I am going to outsource all my cold working to Kristel Britcher in Adelaide and Laurel in Melbs, thats the dream!)
you can also check out her website here
thanks lozzle! xx