The History of Glass Impressions

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Mark Selleck began working with glass in 1969,while working toward a masters degree at Florida State University. His interest in the medium caused him to change his career choice, and he began to develop the skills that would enable him to make a living creating unique objects of glass. Initially, he worked solely with lead crystal and colored glasses, creating mostly hollow pieces: perfume bottles , wine glasses, etc. All were examples of a Bohemian style of lampwork (glass worked over an open flame), in which items are decorated by fusing colored glass to the outer surface of the crystal used to blow the hollow forms.

After several years working with the soft glasses, he became interested in the technical advantages offered by using borosilicate glasses (higher melting point, less thermal expansion) to create heavier, solid pieces. This material allowed one to work slower, with larger masses of glass, and made possible the formation of small sculpture with fine detail that is extremely difficult to maintain using other types of glass.

Until 1979, Mark had worked with glass only as a molten material. A customer's request for a glass chess board, to complement a set of recently commissioned glass chess pieces, led Mark to investigate the possibilities offered by creating frosted designs on flat glass and mirror. After moving to North Carolina, he expanded further into that area, and began to produce not only surface etched designs on flat, curved, and blown glass, but also deep-carved, three dimensional artwork on heavy plate glass.

With a strong interest in maintaining a unique quality to his work, Mark is continually adding to his skills and investigating ways to do things with glass that others have not considered. The spectrum of his work is broad, ranging from small, intricate glass beads, to deep-carved heavy plate glass dining tables. His greatest satisfaction comes from creating one-of-a-kind pieces displaying artistic and technical skill.

1969, October, began experimenting with hot glass

1970, March, began producing first items for sale, in Boca Raton, Florida.

1970, June, moved to Orlando, Florida, continued working to increase skills.

1971-1979 marketed his work while competing in juried art shows across the eastern United States, receiving awards both in craft and sculpture categories.

1980, June, moved to Waxhaw, North Carolina. Opened "Artistry in Glass" on North Main Street. Customer demand caused him to spend more and more time producing sand-carved pieces, less time working with hot glass.

1983, Built a studio on property next to his home, closed "Artistry in Glass".

1989, November, opened Art Trax Gallery, with four partners, on South Main Street, Waxhaw. Closed after 2 years of operation.

1995-'96, Exposure to current interest in glass beads renewed interest in hot glass, developed a separate studio space dedicated to lampwork.

1997-'99, Mark worked on a new concept in sand-carved, three-dimensional, sculpture, while preparing to offer lessons in lampworking in his new studio.

Present: Mark continues to do custom etched and carved glass work for residential and commercial customers, while working more with hot glass and developing competency with fused glass techniques.

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