Amanda Dziedzic is a Melbourne based glass artist who was a Jamfactory Associate in 2008/2009, and is still often seen in our Adelaide Glass Studio. You may have seen her recently on The Design Files (that other blog… :) We love TDF!). We had a chat with Amanda on her last visit here to JamFactory…
Glass. What brought you to the world of glass?
I first studied under Gabriella Bisetto as an elective at Uni SA, way back when the glass studio was at Underdale. (thats a long time ago, I feel old...)
|Amanda Dziedzic at Jamfactory|
You live in Melbourne, but create glass work in Adelaide? How did this come about, and how’s it work for you?
Well we have chopped and changed quite a bit. Adelaide, Melbourne, Adelaide and back to Melbourne. I came back to Adelaide when I got the job as an associate but we had to move back to Melbourne for my husbands job.
Each time it takes a little going to get back into the swing of things but this time the Melbourne glass community feels pretty good to me. When I am in Melbourne I work out of Phillip Stokes gallery and I am just in the process of setting up a studio space in Brunswick with a buddy of mine.
I do love blowing glass at the Jam though. It’s just so familiar for me and the equipment is always top notch. It also just happens to be home to my awesome team...which brings me to your next question..
Tell us about the team!
My team is the awe inspiring Dani Rickaby and Jaan Poldaas. I love those two. They are such talented glass makers and make my production sessions run like clock work. Not only do they run like clock work, we also have a great time together. They are not only my team, they are my mates. I really miss those guys when I am in Melbs so it’s real nice to come home and book those guys for some solid making time together. We have worked together now for something like four years and we have a beautiful kind of rythym together. They make it so easy for me to make my work. Working in the team together is one of my favourite aspects of glass blowing.
|Jaan Poldaas,Amanda and Dani Rickaby aka "The Team"|
What does a typical Adelaide visit for you entail?
A typical Adelaide visit is always hit the ground running! I try and cram in as much as possible which can be tough at times but I always find it rewarding. I am my own worst enemy. But I just feel like I am always on a tight time frame. Roll into town, make the work, grind and polish the work, pack and send the work. All this and try and cram in visits with friends and family.
Tell us about the Yumemiru range. Would you call it your signature piece? Is it your most popular or well known work?
Yumemiru came about as my final year exhibition pieces from being an associate. They are my version of a Japanese daydream. I am mildly obsessed with all things Japan (I have been fortunate enough to travel there 3 times so far), these pieces are my interpretation of my time spent in Japan. They then kind of evolved into production pieces for me. I really enjoy making them.
Again, Japan pops up here with the Daikon raddish that I spotted on my trawls through the Japanese back streets. I just think they are beautiful. As I started to delve more into the root vegetable I also found the beet was used quite a bit in mythology. Have you read that book “Jitterbug Perfume” by Tom Robbins? It’s fantastic.
(Blog editor has theory that Tom Robbins is actually a woman and mustachioed man on the back of the books is her neighbour who poses for book jackets-they hang out on Adirondack chairs, drink scotch whiskey and think it's all quite funny)
I just really like the natural world and for me creating a garden is about taking pride in your own space and gives me a sense of achievement and self worth. The tiny street gardens I saw in Japan are a constant source of inspiration for me.
Last year I was lucky enough to take a class at Pilchuck with Karen and Jasen. They just blew my mind. I started the conversation they should come to the Jam. So through numerous emails back and forth somehow we made it happen! Amazing. I just thought the associates would get so much out of the opportunity. There are not a huge amount of hot glass sculptors in Australia and Karen and Jasen are such fantastic teachers. So I was fortunate enough to TA for them while they were in town teaching which was an experience in itself.
Click for Videos of Karen Willenbrink-Johnsen at JamFactory
Click for Videos of Karen Willenbrink-Johnsen at JamFactory
|Amanda with Karen Willenbrink-Johnsen at JamFactory|
What’s coming up for you at the moment? We hear you’re busy…
My big deal of the moment was my interview on The Design Files. I was pretty stoked to be featured. I have some new product to launch at this years Open House which I am super pumped about. They are beautiful display domes with a turned timber base.
I am also working on establishing a new studio space in Brunswick which is really exciting for me. It is in a warehouse that is shared with 9 other artists from various art forms. It’s really exciting to be insomething from the ground up. We took it over a couple of months ago and the place was a total dump. We have been ripping up the floor, putting up walls, making the space real pretty, learning LOTS.
I also work for glass artist Ruth Allen in her workshop. So yeah, biz-zay!
(Read the Design Files Interview here:TDF Amanda Dziedzic)
Oh man, I have a list as long as my arm for favourite haunts I have to visit when I get back home. Here are a few favourites; The Wheaty is a given for beers and a cheese platter, The Deli, just over the road for the best pizza, Red Door Bakery is the bomb, I love going to the markets for Bibimbap, Tokyo Tower cocktail at Dragonfly a new found fav (thanks Jaansie) is Adelaide Pho on Waymouth St. Their salt and pepper squid is off the hook!!
Again, I have so many!! Here goes:
Ritual Union, Little Dragon
Humpty Dump, The Vibrettes
Crazy on You, Heart
Tightrope, Janelle Monae
Coffee and Tv, Blur
The Wizard, Black Sabbath
Going Up the Country, Kitty, Daisy and Lewis
Dj set from Motor City Drum Ensemble
Have you got any new products coming out? Anything we should know??
Well the Display Domes for the Design Files launch on the 21st of November. I have also been working on my ‘growing bottles’, the ones with the leaf stoppers. I feel like I have a bunch of ideas scrambling around my noodle at the moment, am really, REALLY looking forward to getting into that new studio and getting them all out.
Follow Amanda's blog at Little Bird, Big Chip