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Bruce Thurman, France/USA

Meeting Bruce at a gallery in Holland for the first time in 1986 was the beginning of a long friendship. This American painter lived in Paris at the time and he not only became a dear friend but also a sparring partner in many discussions about art in general and our own work in particular. He now lives in New York again but still holds his apartment in Paris as well, keeping strong ties with Europe and European culture. As a result of this friendship and appreciation for each others work we found a way of collaborating, co-creating unusual art in which we brought together our ideas and skills and inspired one another. Obviously we enjoyed teaming up very much as till today we already created close to a hundred pieces. Have a look at his website to enjoy his wonderful paintings and see his latest work, also check out this short movie.

Painting Bruce Thurman, Glass Peter Bremers

Painting Bruce Thurman, Glass Peter Bremers

Painting Bruce Thurman, Glass Peter Bremers

Painting Bruce Thurman, Glass Peter Bremers

Go to Bruce Thurman website>

Royal Leerdam Crystal

COLLABORATIONS with Royal Leerdam Crystal

Several times in my career, I have been asked to design special editions for specific reasons, including the  Dutch National Glass Museum year-object  the year-object for the Oranje Fonds, a dutch aid foundation and most recently, “het Oranjevaasje”. This is a tradition from Royal Leerdam Crystal, whenever there is a special occasion in the history of the Royal House of Orange-Nassau it will be commemorated by an orange vase – see www.oranjevaasje.com.  Over the years many famous artists/designers have been designing a “Oranjevaasje”, now it was my honor to create a design for the coronation of our new King Willem Alexander. It is a pleasure to work together with master blower and friend Marco Lopulalan again on this project.

Go to Royal Leerdam Crystal website >

Neil Wilkin, England

In 1989, I first visited Neil Wilkin in his studio and saw the master at work. It blew me away to see how controlled he worked and I spend the next 3 weeks trying to assist with questionable success. Two years later Neil and I started working on a body of work that formed my first solo show with art in glass. In developing a working relationship we also became dear friends and I am in great appreciation and gratitude to Neil and the members of our team that worked with us over the following years. Although we stopped working together in 2004 the development of the double graal technique was essential for my career and helped me tremendously in understanding to some extend the possibilities of glass an crystal as a medium. The members of our team all went their own way but I feel eternally connected to them. Neil himself started to focus more on his own designs and is now lamp-working mixed with glassblowing skills, achieving fabulous results – see the man at work.

Wall Tree NeilWilkin 554 Redback spider NeilWilkin

Go to Neil Wilkin website >

Michael Behrens, Germany

A former student, then my assistant for many years and now a successful artist in his own right, I still call on my friend Michael to help me finishing models in my studio and solve technical problems. He has also done a lot of experimental castings for me in his workshop in Düsseldorf with some stunning results.Despite a recent setback, a destructive fire in his studio, Michael is becoming one of Germany`s most important artists working in glass. Inspired by the underwater world, his colorful work has found many followers and collectors. We often exhibit in the same galleries and our highlight so far was a well received show at the Ernsting Museum, Alter Hof Herding.

Michael Bherens Seaforms Michael Bherens Seaforms

Go to Michael Behrens website>

Ngwenya Glass, Swaziland

In 2009 I was invited as a volunteer for PUM, a Dutch aid organization, by Cathy and Chas Prettejohn to visit their glass factory in Ngwenya, Swaziland. Using glass made from recycled bottles in ovens fired with refined oil from a fast food restaurant chain, Ngwenya Glass is a fine example of ‘green’ production, employing many local people and supporting local economy. That first year we created new designs including a range of tableware. In order to get more local artists and designers involved in creating designs for the factory, we decided to have an annual workshop were masterblowers from all over the world would join Ngwenya masterblowers Sibusiso Mhlanga, James Magagula and their crew as well as African artists, designers and students to co-create. Some well known colleagues like JanErik Ritzman from Sweden, Tim Shaw from Australia, Richard Price and Marco Lopulalan from the Netherlands, David Reade from South Africa and Richard Jolley from the USA, brought their skills, knowledge and ideas to Swaziland and got wonderful memories and new friends in return. Needless to say that I myself became very attached to Ngwenya and it`s people and that my partner Janet and I love to visit the Prettejohn`s and all our other friends at Ngwenya. Read their interesting story on their website.

Blown by James Magagula Blown by Sibusiso Mhlanga

Go to Ngwenya Glass website>

Lhotsky S.R.O. Studio, Czech Republic.

Since the start of the Icebergs & paraphernalia series, using kiln casting techniques, I worked together with the famous Czech glass specialists from Zelezny Brod. Working with these masters has been an ongoing inspiration and a journey of expanding possibilities that have enabled me to create my best work. Apart from Zdenek Lhotsky and his talented staff , who produce many of my large sculptures, I am grateful to Ruda Banas for making wonderful coloured glass and his willingness to create the impossible, stunning outdoor glass. I also enjoy working with casters Radovan Brychta and Jiri Hyska.

Lhotsky studio with model of the "Victory of Righteousness"

Robert polishing Canyons and Deserts n*56 "Grand Canyon"

Go to Lhotsky studio website>