About Kate O'Connell

Kate is a three-dimensional designer, working with glass, metal and ceramics to produce both functional and sculptural designs.

” I’m a three-dimensional designer, working with glass, metal and ceramics to produce both functional and sculptural designs. My inspiration comes from things that have gone before – historical objects of function whose essence can be used as a basis for contemporary craft. My aim is to use the materials, shapes and textures in a new way, retaining the mood and spirit of the original sources in challenging and exciting new designs. Achieving this while using reclaimed materials where I can adds another dimension to the work. “

Kate specialises in working with fused glass from her own purpose built studio within the grounds of her home in Romsey.

Having graduated from Portsmouth University with a BA (Hons) degree in 3D design in 2008, Kate now teaches the skills she has gained through leading workshops and taster sessions from various venues including Making Space.

Kate also has space for 4 students in her home studio, which is a great space big enough to produce her own work as well as inspiring others to create theirs. Kate also mentions how “It’s great to only have to run across the garden in the morning to get to work!” This is of course one of the great plus sides to working from home.

As well as teaching, Kate produces her own designs and tells us about her love of “shrinking the gaps between different media in terms of function and appearance.”

Inspiration for Kate comes from “Old Stuff” as she spends a lot of her spare time in Museums, historic buildings and junk shops. The reason behind her inspiration is the study of old materials and objects and the thought of how they can be “translated into other media, or re-done in a new way.”

At the moment, Kate is doing a lot of experimenting with ways to make glass look and feel like metal, brick and stone explaining how she “likes to surprise people when they find out the pendant they’re holding is cast glass and not rusty iron after all. That crossover works in terms of function as well.”

Kate has recently begun creating a series of sketchbooks that have fused glass covers with all sorts of funky designs and patterns. Kate explains how the glass is “pretty tough once it’s been fired and makes a lovely smooth surface for drawing or writing on.” For this particular project, Kate is collaborating with a bookbinder to look at different ways they can be presented.

Glass, metal, ceramics, teaching, sculpture.

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