Cathy Constable lived in East Anglia for much of my life, Cathy’s work is inspired by the light, muted colours and textures of the marshes, estuaries and landscape that surround her.
She uses fused glass as a vehicle to express the ethereal qualities and feel of the salt marshes, water channels and mudflats. As a medium, the reflective properties of glass can be exploited to evoke the nature and patterns of water and land.
The East Anglian coastline is typically flat but with many horizontal layers across fields, marshland and eventually sea and beyond. Layers of glass are built up and fired several times to emulate the depth of layers in the countryside. The nature of refraction in glass also adds to depth and texture.
The use of opaque and iridescent glass, enamels, glass powders and frit adds to the complexity of the pieces. I like to work on the edges of abstraction to reflect the sense of a place. I like to add a touch of context. Maybe a Sandpiper or Avocet, sailing boats or plants typical to this area.
She enjoys working with the unpredictability of the physical properties of glass. It is as though a moment has been frozen in time. Working with glass and heat is like trying to control the uncontrollable by careful choice of colours, composition and heat work. Despite trying to persuade the colours in a certain direction it will inevitably decide for itself! Of course, happy accidents can then lead to deliberate technique next time.