Amy Cushing

"have to create and use my hands"

What do you make?

Kiln-formed glass for interiors, hot and cold worked. My pieces are site-specific art, commissioned for a particular place, whether a home, hotel lobby, company headquarters, reception desk and so on. My clients include galleries, art consultants and architects.

Tell us more

Multiple layers of sheet glass and metallic compounds are kiln-fired. When cold, they are re-worked and fired again. I cut large pieces and finish them, sometimes drilling holes to take threads for hanging. Other work is wall fixed.

What sets your work apart?

My passion for colour sequence, and my ability to work on a large scale. My portfolio has evolved over 20 years as I explore and expand the relationship between art and architecture.

Why are you a maker?

I just have to create and use my hands. I also enjoy designing. My biggest challenge is “seeing through” an idea rather than moving on to a new project. I’ve never questioned my creative path – it’s been with me since early childhood and was actively encouraged. Actually, I’ve never had a “regular job”. I’ve experimented with materials all my adult life, recording the results and thinking about where to take my work next.

Inspirations?

Light, colour and reflection – sunlight dancing through water for example.

Where do you work?

My studio is in my garden in London and purpose-built. Ideally I would have a larger, higher working space but it’s good for the time being. I’m resourceful and use everything to its best creative advantage. I live and work “as one” using my studio at all and any time – after all, it’s at home!. The most important requirement for a good workshop is light.

Favourite tool?

My hand-held glass cutter – small and simple but with the power to score, cut and manipulate the tough brittle material of cold glass. It has “worn” like a pair of shoes to the shape of my hand hands, so it’s very personal almost an extension of my fingers.

What next?

Expanding my current portfolio and building contacts. I have so many new ideas for glass which can enhance an environment. And I hope to exhibit overseas.

Advice for glassmakers?

Don’t underestimate the workload. This is a very laborious material and it’s got a life of its own. This of course is its beauty too.