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Jade Tapson

by Angie Boyer

Published: January 2018

Winner of the craft&design Highly Commended Award at The British Glass Biennale 2017

In addition to winning our own craft&design Highly Commended Award at the 2017 British Glass Biennale, Jade Tapson was also presented with the prestigious Glass Sellers Art & Craft Student Award at the opening of the exhibition - quite an achievement for someone who's just starting out on their creative journey!

 "Being selected to take part in the British Glass Biennale 2017 was a great experience as it was my first exhibition since graduating from my Master’s degree," says Jade. "Winning the awards and being selected for the exhibition has given me more confidence in my work and the affirmation that I am taking it in the right direction."  

Jade's award winning work comprised a series of panels displayed to brilliant effect at the entrance to the exhibition, it looked stunning and I'm sure that, like me, many visitors were intrigued to know more about it.

"The focus of Scale was to explore the process of screen printing with glass powders along with trapping air inside glass. I wanted to research how the size of the printed pattern would affect the shape and size of the bubbles trapped within the glass when it is fused. Scale is made up of eight panels which decrease in size.

"To create one of the panels I start by drawing my pattern on the computer before transferring it on to a silk screen. Glass powder is then pushed through the screen onto a clear sheet of glass, replicating the pattern with the powder. The powder is tack fused onto the surface of the glass sheet and then another layer of glass is fused on top. The second firing fuses the two layers of glass together sandwiching the powder between and trapping air bubbles in the void spaces of the pattern."

In complete contrast to this series of work, Jade also creates delicate, textile-like glass pieces using pate de verre, these are very different from her geometrically patterned works, as she explains, "I use pate de verre as well as the process of printing directly onto the kiln shelf to explore my interest in the fragility of glass, along with challenging traditional conceptions of the qualities being transparent and smooth. Much of my inspiration for these pieces comes from my interest in fashion design. Even though my creative direction has changed, it has not dulled my passion for the fashion industry and this remains a constant inspiration to me."

So how does Jade envisage her work developing in the future, which direction might it take? "There are a number of ways in which I would like to develop my work. I am currently looking into designing a collection of furniture, which would allow me to incorporate other materials into my work. In addition to this I am continuing to experiment with the powder printing technique, particularly in relation to producing pieces on a larger scale."




Alongside her own practice, Jade also teaches at the National Glass Centre in Sunderland, which is where she trained, graduating with a BA (Hons) in Glass and Ceramics in 2014 and then completing her MA in Glass there two years later. "I enjoy sharing what I have learnt with others. When teaching adult courses I never know what to expect from the participants, it’s exciting to see what others come up with using the same technique, but also they push me to learn and try new ideas and approaches to the process or material.

In addition to her award winning glass pieces, Jade also creates more commercially focussed work in the form of jewellery, tableware and bigger furniture pieces. Her smaller works are available in gallery shops such as the National Glass Centre shop and she is currently looking to branch out to other similar stockists. Jade is also pleased to accept commissions.

Ian W. Wallace Craft Insurance

craft&design Best Newcomer Award at BCTF

Congratulations to Charlotte Wilkinson! We'll tell you more about Charlotte and her spectacular glass in our May issue of craft&design Online!

craft&design Highly Commended Newcomer Award at BCTF


We were delighted to present our Highly Commended Newcomer Award to Rouaida Boullier ROUAIDA.COM for her highly original range of jewellery. Find out more in our May issue of craft&design Online!

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