Meet Cathryn Shilling

Originally working as a designer and with a degree in Graphic Design, Cathryn’s move to the USA in 2001 prompted her to pursue a new and exciting creative direction. Here she was introduced to and studied Stained Glass and, continuing to explore the medium in 2004, Cathryn became a student of blown glass with Peter Layton, while also experimenting with the possibilities of kilnformed glass. She worked as the curator of the Gallery at London Glassblowing from 2010-2019. 

Cathryn’s work has been collected and widely exhibited internationally including the British Glass Biennale and the Emerge Juried Kiln-Glass Exhibition at Bullseye Gallery, Portland, USA. She won the international Warm Glass Artists Prize in 2013. In 2015 she was included in the Glassation list of ‘The 18 Most Game Changing Female Glass Artists’ and in the Graphic Design Hub’s list of ‘The 30 Most Amazing Glass Artists Alive Today’. 

About The Work

Cathryn Shilling’s years in graphic design allowed her to develop skills in a wide range of creative processes and products, enabling a natural and spontaneous move into glass. For her, kilnformed glass has proved to be the perfect medium; Not only does it permit creative and technical freedom, but facilitates works that are tactile, intriguing and enduring.

Cathryn is best known for her trademark glass cloth pieces which utilise traditional Venetian glass cane techniques. The canes are created by drawing molten glass into fine threads of no more than one or two millimetres in diameter. The strands are then fused together in the kiln until they resemble sheets of woven fabric. While hot, these forms are then re-fired and manipulated through a series of moulding, bending or draping methods to become three-dimensional artworks. The vibrant surfaces of her pieces evoke a dynamic sense of movement, texture, light and colour.