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Columbus glass art studio provides learning experience for all levels

The melted glass at the end of the blowpipe has been dipped in colour pigments. Credit: Tristan Relet-Werkmeister | Lantern Reporter

It’s 85 degrees outside, but 2,000 degrees inside the spacious glassblowing studio that sits on West Town Street.

Glass Axis, a nonprofit organization that teaches the art of glassblowing to the public, was created by 10 students in the Ohio State University Glass Program in 1987. Implemented in Franklinton in 2014, the large studio offers a versatile creative space for its artists, students and teachers.

“I love to teach,” resident glassblower Lisa Horkin said. “It is nice to share this passion with others.”

The classes normally last about one hour and start with safety rules to prevent burns or cuts. When the classes begin, Horkin explains how glass is made, immediately followed by a demonstration.

Horkin said molten glass is created by plunging a blowpipe into a furnace and maintaining a steady temperature of 2,000 degrees. Afterward, she had students dip their molten glass into the color pigments of their choice.

The glass is then shaped by rolling it across a flat surface and blowing. During the whole process, the blowpipe has to be constantly rotated so the glass keeps its circular form.

Two of the attendees, Meredith and John, said they wanted to try something new when they decided to join the class.

“[I] really like to go on different adventures and thought it was an interesting and different thing to do,” Meredith said.

John said it seemed fun, and “a little out of the ordinary.”

Neither attendee provided their last name to The Lantern.

Horkin encourages everyone, no matter their skill level, to take a glassblowing class and have a go at it.

“Just do it. Just try it,” Horkin said.

Classes take place on the weekends and can be booked online at glassaxis.org. Depending on the type of glass work students want to make, prices vary from $15 to $115.

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