Collectors admire glass sculptures (also known as studio glass) for both their lustrous beauty and their inherent fragility--a property which attests to the artist’s level of skill. Artists may shape molten glass through hot processes such as blowing and casting, or work glass at room temperature via cold processes including sandblasting, grinding, and bonding. Our skilled artists from all over the world create a variety of such artworks, from blown glass sculptures to cold work sculptures, all carrying Saatchi Art’s 100% guarantee. Browse our international selection of glass sculptures for sale to find the perfect work for you.
The art of making glass sculptures is rooted in practices invented by the ancient Phoenicians, who are credited with creating the first glass. Glass was usually used to create ritual vessels or intricate stained glass windows for religious contexts, but toward the end of the 19th century, glass art became widely recognized as an art form. Before the 1960s, glass art was usually made by groups of factory workers. The medium’s popularity led to the formation of an international studio glass movement across America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. These artists wanted to establish themselves as designers of unique objects and sought to prove the medium’s artistic value.
To make glass sculptures, artists can use hot and cold methods. Cold work involves shaping glass at room temperature. Some artists cut and polish glass or use sandblasting techniques to treat their sculptures. Hot processes include blowing and casting. Artists form glass blown sculptures by using metal rods and tubes to shape and blow glass in a furnace. Cast glass requires the artist to first create a mold out of sand or plaster and silica before firing the piece in the furnace and kiln. Many sculptors decorate their works during the process of creation. Some add murrine, small patterned tiles, or rods of colored glass that weave throughout the piece while it is blown.
Dale Chihuly is one of the most well-known glass sculptors. His vibrant works like his Ikebana (1989) and Chandeliers series (1992) are recognized for their large scale, a difficult feat to accomplish with blown glass. Rene Lalique is known for creating naturalistic human and animal busts in the Art Deco style. Peter Newsome creates mostly clear and blue glass sculptures and plays with curvilinear lines in his works. Jeff Koons made colored glass sculptures like “Violet Ice (Kama Sutra)” (1991) as part of his “Made in Heaven” series. Other artists known for their glass works include Emile Galle, David Reekie, Fritz Dreisbach, Marvin Lipofsky, Sam Herman, and Jim Hodges.