Mark Ammermann specialises in architectural installations, fused glass panels, jewellery, cast glass sculpture and bowls and blown sculpture and studio glass.
He shares his studio with Emma Borland (another MADA Gallery Shop artist), in the village of Monbulk which is situated in the picturesque Dandenong Ranges on Melbourne’s eastern fringe.
At MADA Gallery shop we hold a collection of Ammermann’s Rice Bowls which are made out of Visibeads (the small glass paints added to road paint to make it reflective). This series was a finalist for the 2013 Ranamok Glass Prize, the most prestigious glass prize in Australia.
MADA Gallery: Why did you choose to study Bachelor of Fine Arts (Majoring in Glass)?
Mark Ammermann: I have had a lifelong interest in art and finally chose to study it.
MG: Did you work with glass before coming here to Monash University and how did your degree inform and inspire your practice?
MA: I started to work with glass as a hobby in 2004.
I briefly attended the Whaganui Glass School in New Zealand before doing my degree at Monash.
Probably the largest single impact that Monash had on my work was the very high quality Art Theory education.
MG: How has your work changed or developed since studying at Monash?
MA: My work is always changing and developing. At the current time I am starting a glass blowing facility as well as investigating creating my own colour in the glass.
MG: What inspires you to make your work?
MA: I am always researching new ideas and these inspire the direction of my work.
A big influence on me currently is that I have undertaking a Masters in Teaching at Monash.
MG: What drew you to using glass as your chosen medium?
MA: I have always been fascinated by glass. My grandmother and my mother both collected glass.
MG: What are some of the joys and difficulties you face with working with your chosen medium?
MA: Glass is a very technical medium. Its implementation borders on the industrial with a bit of chemistry thrown in.
It can take a lot of time and effort to develop new ideas and processes. In the end the finished work is always rewarding.
MG: Where is your studio located?
MA: My studio is located at my home in Monbulk. I share the 8m x 6m shed with my partner Emma Borland.
MG: What does a typical day in the studio involve for you?
MA: There are so many tasks to do that there is really no typical day. I might be making waxes or moulds or working on the new glassblowing equipment.
In the near future I am hoping that I will be blowing glass for 3 or 4 hours each morning.
MG: What are your artistic plans for the future? (eg, new range, exhibitions, travel for inspiration ect)
MA: I am currently working on making another large crystal rice bowl.
I am designing a series of intricate blown glass jars and will continue to work on colouring the cast glass.
You can visit Mark’s website at: www.handmadeglass.com.au
Mark’s work is stocked at: MADA Gallery, Glass Plus Gallery, and Kirra Gallery in Melbourne. In Canberra at the Canberra Glassworks and in Sydney at the Glass Artists Gallery.