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January 1, 2009 4:02 PM   Subscribe


 
Why on earth are you posting a video by someone who fell into a tourist trap?
posted by lucia__is__dada at 4:06 PM on January 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


lol cats are popular.
posted by stbalbach at 4:09 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Very cute, but did he really have to declaw it in the final step?
posted by maudlin at 4:10 PM on January 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm fairly sure I saw this guy when I was in Venice. Tourist trap or not, the man is truly amazing to watch. Thanks for the video -- fond memories. :)
posted by juliebug at 4:14 PM on January 1, 2009


Headline is missing punctuation.

Glass, blowing Venice man, makes cat.
posted by Johnny Porno at 4:19 PM on January 1, 2009


Does whatever a Venice can?
posted by Bromius at 4:20 PM on January 1, 2009


If you put a coin in the hot glass it melts, which is pretty cool.
posted by Artw at 4:25 PM on January 1, 2009


I wonder how many cats that guy has kicking around.
posted by dunkadunc at 4:29 PM on January 1, 2009


stbalbach, I appreciated the way the guy introduced those two that made even I CAN HAZ CHEEZBURGER sound like an NPR snoozefest.
posted by Foam Pants at 4:31 PM on January 1, 2009


KEETY!
posted by SansPoint at 4:31 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


He didn't exactly blow that cat. Now there's a sentence I didn't expect to be writing today.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:45 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


There is something magical about glassblowing. No wonder the physics of it don't make sense to anyone.
posted by Kattullus at 4:46 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Where is the carb?
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 4:52 PM on January 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


I saw a similar thing when I was in Venice. The man made a horse in something like 25 seconds. It was really neat, and the finished product was beautiful.
posted by aclevername at 4:58 PM on January 1, 2009


kitty!
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 5:14 PM on January 1, 2009


Weigh kewel thanks.
posted by ahimsakid at 6:00 PM on January 1, 2009


Pitty it's not a real cat
posted by mattoxic at 6:10 PM on January 1, 2009


I'd like to see more glassblowing videos.
posted by metastability at 6:11 PM on January 1, 2009


Glass Blowing Venice Man Makes Cat
Virtually every permutation of these words is a sentence.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:11 PM on January 1, 2009 [8 favorites]


I can't believe people are cooing. It's glass!
posted by Manhasset at 6:12 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Why on earth are you posting a video by someone who fell into a tourist trap?

This is an astounding physical process, regardless of how it might be marketed. The man is working against the clock, gravity, his nerves, the precision of the tools, and molten glass. I dabble with glasswork and this is very impressive.
posted by odinsdream at 6:14 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't give a shit if it IS a tourist trap, odinsdream is right, that's really fascinating work.
posted by HopperFan at 6:45 PM on January 1, 2009


Seems like it'd be more accurate to call it "Lampworking Venice Man."

But seriously, aside from the "ooh pretty, it's hot and we love fire, etc." it's not that impressive. Any professional sculptor in just about any medium should be able to make a basic cat in that speed. Whether it's clay, glass, or balloons, it's not that complex.
posted by explosion at 7:47 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Cats are easy. Now a dog, that would be impressive.
posted by erpava at 8:28 PM on January 1, 2009


Whether it's clay, glass, or balloons, it's not that complex.

When it's glass, it's a hundred times more complex than clay. He didn't just make the cat "quickly" -- he made it in exactly the amount of time in which it had to be made.

Drawing out each feature had to be pretty much perfect the first time, and his interaction with the glass is limited to a single point of articulation, using specific speed and force to "set" the thickness and shape of the feature.

He made it look easy, but this is like combining sculpture, juggling, and flamenco dancing.
posted by CaseyB at 8:32 PM on January 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


I dunno, maybe it's just because I had a misspent youth in Renaissance Fairs, but you can see way better glass work at pretty much any big fair of the type where people are seen in costume. I mean, don't get me wrong, it's cool...but you can tell he's done that particular shape a zillion times, and the finished product, while cat-shaped in an art deco sort of way, is hardly an example of the amazing glass work being done in Venise.

There are some of the best artists in the world working there, and a post about glass blowing/sculpture/etc. coming from Italian creators and their traditions, could have been a deep and interesting post.
posted by dejah420 at 8:40 PM on January 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'd just like to thank the OP for posting this video so that I could see some amazing (to me) glasswork without having to go anywhere near a Renaissance Fair.

And if that's a tourist trap -- what a classy tourist trap! Where I come from all we have is a drugstore that sells bumper stickers and a hill that feels vaguely like you're going uphill when you're going down.
posted by mmoncur at 11:55 PM on January 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm old enough to remember the Covent Garden Glassworks that used to be on Long Acre where you could watch things being made, though never anything as cool as that cat. Thanks for posting this. He made it look so easy.
posted by essexjan at 12:19 AM on January 2, 2009


Any professional sculptor in just about any medium should be able to make a basic cat in that speed. Whether it's clay, glass, or balloons, it's not that complex.

Could you check for a local glassblowing/lampworking class in your area? If not to take the class, then at least to go watch some work in person. It's clear from your comment that you aren't aware of the way molten glass behaves, nor the way it needs to be worked with to achieve results. It's a really intriguing process and I highly recommend you check it out first-hand.
posted by odinsdream at 7:29 AM on January 2, 2009


Yeah, but can you eat his work afterwards?
posted by Pollomacho at 8:20 AM on January 2, 2009


Pollomacho, he's wearing no gloves, and the people are literally taking that candy out of his mouth, so forgive me if I'd rather eat the glass cat.
posted by cjorgensen at 9:56 AM on January 2, 2009


forgive me if I'd rather eat the glass cat

Sure, the "paint" may be made of some sort of industrial chemical (and probably the "sugar" too), but he at least took the cigarrette out of his mouth to blow it up.
posted by Pollomacho at 10:46 AM on January 2, 2009


O HAI I IZ MOLTEN!
posted by Faint of Butt at 12:21 PM on January 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


Having taken a glassblowing class in college, I can attest that it's not easy at ALL. I never got further than misshapen glass bowls. I enjoyed this video.
posted by Windigo at 3:17 PM on January 2, 2009


Not easy indeed. I tried blowing glass once--accidentally inhaled and got a pane in my lungs.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 3:47 PM on January 2, 2009 [2 favorites]


The hotel we stayed at in Venice (and probably all the others as well) seemed to have some sort of back-scratching deal with back alley glassworks on Murano. We got a free boat ride over for a tour that ended up in their large (and quite impressive) shop. Our guy did a horse and a glass with some beads that melted themselves into color swirls. It was a literal tourist trap - you had to buy something if you wanted a ride off the island, otherwise you had to pay for a water taxi.

Oh, and as a warning for others planning on staying in Venice - the room description of "decorated in the Venetian style" means that somebody vomited gold paisley onto red wallpaper and put all sorts of braided gold tasselly things everywhere. The visual noise was quite painful.
posted by argh at 9:00 PM on January 2, 2009


I think that guy's on Murano, not Venice. The one I saw did the horse. The filmer missed the part at the end where he throws a piece of newspaper onto the "cooled" animal and it bursts into flame.

(Much cooler to break away from the tour and try to get into the real factories, though. You can take a regular vaporetto over and don't have to buy a thing.)
posted by bink at 9:19 AM on January 3, 2009


Venice is very 80s.
posted by Artw at 11:52 AM on January 3, 2009


1680's
posted by Dr.Pill at 6:17 PM on January 3, 2009


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