I'm Maggie Napier and I'm a flamework glass artist who makes jewellery. I'm based in Co.Down, N. Ireland and have over 15 years of practice and research, experimenting and creating art glass beads and unique jewellery using the highest quality Italian and American glass.
Between graduating with a degree in Design and a Post Graduate Diploma in Applied Art I lived in Rome where an interest in ancient glass, archaeology and ornamentation evolved. This curiosity, the acquiring of my first flamework torch in 2005 and years of experimenting with molten glass has led to the creation of Glassistudio.
Today I host regular glass beadmaking workshops in my studio and public hot glass demonstrations.
the process of...
Using a process known as ‘Lampwork’ or ‘Flamework’, I individually create unique glass pieces.
This entails melting, wrapping and sculpting rods of glass, usually around a steel core, to form a bead or small sculpture. The glass can be light reflective or etched, transparent or opaque, colourful or subtly monochrome.
Each piece is made with focus and attention to detail before combining with other materials to create a wearable piece of glass art
The glass ring Maggie made for me is perfect. Maggie is easy to work with and is prompt with delivery. I would definitely buy from her again.
Bought as a birthday present. Arrived quickly and well packaged. The necklace is perfect and the colours are beautiful. Thank you
Q & A with Maggie Napier
Why Flamework Glass?
"Imagine working with a material which can turn from solid to liquid within a matter of seconds, that flows like lava and lets light pour through it . Molten glass encourages swift manipulation and experimentation with form. Hands, eyes and brain are fully engaged in the moment- a lapse in concentration can ruin (or alter) the potential of a piece..."
"Beads form an intrinsic part of the human story, the earliest known examples discovered at La Quina, France, date from 38,000 B.C, before the earliest known figurative art. It is possible that beads also predate language, forming a rudimentary method of communication and exchange. People have made beads from bone, seeds, shells, wood, stone, clay and glass. They have been worn and carried, transported and exchanged, marking our interactions and footsteps for millennia. Beads fulfilled many roles, as protective talismans and signifiers of status, worry beads and rosary beads have slipped through fingers to whispered prayers. All civilisations, from the Ancient Egyptians and Romans, to Chinese dynasties, Vikings and Indigenous Indians have their own 'bead' language and history, fascinating and intriguing. In my own work I try to incorporate a little of that human, tactile quality of ancient beadmaking and value, creating something entrancing and curious to wear or exchange."
Here at Glass i Studio, I host glassmaking workshops, offering you the opportunity to work with molten glass to create your personal unique beads.
I've welcomed and worked with both professional makers and absolute beginners sharing our passion and curiosity for 'glassbeadmaking'