IN 2012, Nick Mount was named a “Living Treasure: Master of Australian Craft” by Object: Australian Design Centre.

'Plum on Corten' by Nick Mount, photo Pippy Mount
'Plum on Corten' by Nick Mount, photo Pippy Mount
Now Mount, one of the country’s foremost glass artists, with an international reputation to boot, is staging an exhibition called “The fabric of work” that opens this Wednesday in Canberra Glassworks.

Featuring installations of blown, carved and polished glass assembled with wood and metal components, these works, so the Glassworks tell us, “combine a respect for traditional glassmaking techniques with a wry Australian wit” – and we have noted of late how fond the Glassworks are of glass with humour.

Mount has been a leading figure in the Australian studio glass movement since the early '70s. As a teacher and practitioner, he has made a mighty contribution to the development of glass as an artistic medium in this country. As well, he exhibits regularly in Europe, the US and Japan.

Describing “The fabric of work”, he says, “The pieces presented in this exhibition describe the dominant themes and aesthetic of my work over the last few years. Some of the pieces are new, while a few have been included for their particular significance in the telling of the story. The Scent Bottles, Plumb Bobs [that’s a joke, see the image], Bubbles and Still Life compositions all describe an evolution in my work that weaves the yarn into a simple fabric that supports my belief in the importance of family, community and hand work.”

Mount says he believes that “work” is fundamental in the development of identity , and that for him, “the fabric of our community is, to a large extent, determined by the work we do with our hands.”

Nick Mount: “The fabric of work,” at Canberra Glassworks, Wentworth Avenue, Kingston, May 14 to June 19. From 14 May to 19 June 2014. Mount will speak at the Gallery Floor Talk from 10.30am this Saturday May 17.

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Ian Meikle, editor