Last night I was reading one of my dozens of vintage craft books: Needlepainting A Garden of Stitches by Eszter Haraszty (published in 1974). If you appreciate hand made, are a textile fanatic (or live with one) do a search and purchase the book ASAP.

The author wrote: Talent is 1/10 inspiration and 9/10 hard work.
I define talent as the ability to ideate with a developed skill to actualize the concept.

Many years ago I was looking at slabs of Dalle glass in a glass studio/shop on Euclid. I was particularly fortunate that day because the owner was absent and a worker invited me into the back rooms that housed thousands of slabs of Dalle glass.

I was immediately enthralled and wanted to buy everything but was told the glass wasn't for sale. Somehow (I looked a lot different back then) I was able to persuade an employee to sell several pieces of the precious glass. Seriously, it's quite precious.

Dalle glass is also called slab glass and you've seen it in cathedral windows (do a google image search on Dalle Glass). From what I recall it was broken into dimensional pieces and worked into place. At least that's what I did with it:

I didn't have the skill to work with glass or solder so I talked to Hank (RIP) at Mithra (RIP) and told him what I wanted to make: A free standing vessel using the glass but not those little boxes people were making. I wanted to make a vessel mixing mediums like pottery and glass.

It can't be done, Hank told me.
I sullenly signed up for a window making stained glass windows convinced that once I learned how to solder I could create what I was sketching.
Months later I took this piece to Hank (who obviously remembered our initial conversation) and he said: It can be done!

Please don't think I'm am posthumously getting in Hank's grille or bragging. I was moving some things around today in preparation for painting the room (see the post below) and this piece just happened to catch the expansive October light.
I also had other thoughts on talent.

Between the idea and the reality falls the Shadow. -T.S.Eliot (His father owned Hydraulic Brick in St. Louis)

Read about Modernist designer Eszter Haraszty who designed for Knoll by clicking on the title of this post. Or buy her book to see the her incredible work.

1 comment:

Carol said...

you need to check out Little flower Church in Richmond Heights- its a round church and the dome is made of the "chunk glass" was one of my inspirations- although I never worked with it. really like the piece you made- you expanded the boundary nicely