“GLASS is a collaborative activity,” says artist Scott Chaseling, “that’s a big part of why we like it so much and it’s just like that in Canberra.”Chaseling is currently caretaker for Megalo’s 1927 heritage cottage on Dairy Flat, restored during the Stanhope era’s “repair, renovate, restore” phase and now home to visiting artists.
But he won’t be there for much longer because he’ll soon be off to Berlin for six months via a university near Chicago.
That’s nothing new for him. “I don’t think I’ve ever stopped in the one place for more than four years,” he says.
Chaseling has already lived in Germany for four years and says it puts him in mind of Montmartre in the 1800s or SoHo, New York, in the 1950s, packed with cafes and artistic frisson.
During his previous time there he and some friends created a studio in an old Stasi car park. He introduced an American woman, Nadinia Idriss, to the location and there she built, amazingly, the first hot-glass workshop in Berlin, for which Chaseling became regional artistic director.
“It makes you realise that Canberra really is a major international centre of glass…we live in the most amazing glass community.”
As if to prove it, Chaseling is taking part in the exhibition “Glint”, curated by Alison Alder and coming up soon at The Glassworks, which got together with Megalo Print Studio to give four glass and four print artists (Chaseling, Emilie Patteson, Ben Rak, Annika Romeyn, Dionisia Salas, Mark Thiele, Melinda Willis and Annie Trevillian) the chance to explore connections between their different forms.
So how do you mix glass and print? Easy, you find the point at which glass breaks and where you can introduce print, Chaseling says, or you can etch on glass, or you can make flat image prints and embed them into flat glass, or you can print images into blown glass.
“Glint”, at Canberra Glassworks, 11 Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, July 2-August 3.