/6th International Symposium
of Engraved Glass Kamenický Šenov/


The first symposium of engraved glass
was held in 1996 as a result of
the endeavour of the Kamenický Šenov
municipality, the Glass Museum and
the Secondary Glass School (hereinafter
SUPŠS) Kamenický Šenov, of
the professional arts and crafts
communities, manufacturing and business
subjects and of the large community
of researchers, collectors and experts
in the engraved glass field.

The course of the first symposium
exceeded all assumptions of its
organizers. However all the organizing
subjects expected the interest of
numerous active glass artists,
craftsmen and experts, Kamenický Šenov
became a place of a real historical
event. Beginning with the first
symposium Kamenický Šenov hosted not
only an elite group of glass engravers
but also numerous artists who were not
specifically oriented on engraved glass
nevertheless who felt a need
to participate in the unique event,
to be experimentally engaged in the
creative programme and to bring something
new to the engraved glass environment.
The expected interest of theorists
and historians at specialized lectures
was always enriched by the beneficial
and innovative approaches connecting
engraved glass and related techniques
and technologies in sometimes unexpected
contexts.

The symposium was intended as an
international and generously conceived
project and its aim was clearly formulated
– on one hand to create an active
environment for the common work of artists
and craftsmen engaged in engraved glass
and on the other hand to offer a wide
platform for meetings of glass historians,
pedagogues, theorists, technologists
and businessman with the aim to present
engraved glass as an essential discipline
going beyond limits of glassmaking as well
as crossing borders among states
and continents. The international reputation
achieved by the event proves the fact
the aim was always fulfilled. The symposium
almanacs and catalogues are valuable
documents definitely confirm its benefit.

The regular holding of the symposium was
interrupted in 2011 particularly because
of the problematic situation of SUPŠS
Kamenický Šenov that has been its decisive
partner from the very beginning. Due to
the actual consolidation of the situation
at SUPŠS and the principal support of
the Kamenický Šenov municipality,
the members of the Association of
the Symposium of Engraved Glass (that
has been its main organizer from the
very beginning) decided to organize
the symposium after the six years long
break, to exploit the experience from
previous years and to bring a new impulse
to the event.
The organizational committee prepared
a changed format of the symposium outlined
for 2014 in a bit reduced form compared
with the past both in the number
of participants and accompanying events.
The aim was to create a more intimate
working atmosphere concentrated both
on the work in workshops and on an
intensive communication among participants.
The five days long working of participants
was followed by a weekend programme
beginning on Friday, Sept. 19 with
participation of additional guests.
The weekend programme included
presentations of authors´ works and glass
projects, professional discussions,
openings of exhibitions and social
meetings. The programme was crowned by
the visit at the Glass Art Centre in 
Sázava where chosen takers in engraved
glass could follow in working at
the Jiří Harcuba School.

22 artists and craftsmen oriented in
the first place on engraved glass were
intentionally invited to the active
creative participation in the symposium
– 7 from the Czech Republic, 7 from abroad
and 8 students of glass professions from
the Czech Republic and abroad. This year
the students´ programme has been included
in the total concept included
the exhibition where the students´ works
were displayed together with works by
outstanding authors as an organic part
of the resulting presentation. SUPŠS
offered the participants not only
the opportunity to work in the engraving
workshop but also the exploitation of any
technical equipment. The engravers could
use among others also exclusive glass
semi-products delivered by a major partner
of the symposium, the company of Moser
a.s. Karlovy Vary, and coloured plates
provided by the St. Lamberts glassworks
that were used for a common work of
the participants in the form of individual
engravings symbolically joined in one
composition.
The symposium regulations include also
the opportunity to bring even finished
and semi-finished pieces as the time
demands of some engravings go over
the possibilities of the five-day cycle.
Despite of it, unique works proving
the vitality of engraved glass and
especially its diversity were finished
or directly originated. No exaggeration
to say that, even after centuries of
the development when the glass engraving
reached the absolute technical and creative
peaks, it is a technique of extraordinary
artistic and technological capabilities.
Engraved glass can be understood
quite unconventionally, innovatively,
inventively and very contemporarily
without spoiling the respect to the craft
and the continuity.

One of the fundamental messages of this
symposium is the fact this unique
technique has real masters in the field
across several generations. Another
extraordinarily positive message is the
finding out that numerous young authors
understand the engraving as
an attractive field of employment worth
a systematic engagement. It is proved by
the fact that even besides the students´
section one could meet both accepted
masters and engravers with unorthodox
approach and with ambitious to move
the art limits, offer new technological
solutions and possibilities of application
of engraved glass. Exactly the need
of new impulses and the intergeneration
communication in the world of engraved
glass was one of the motives leading
to the origin of the symposium
in Kamenický Šenov.

Within the symposium its participants
could present their own works, visit
glassmaking workshops and studios in
the region and primarily get to know
one another both professionally
and socially. Thanks to the closer
concept of the 6th Symposium the informal
meetings were extraordinary successful.
Thus the exhibition of results of
the 6th Symposium in the Glass Museum 
Kamenický Šenov has offered a really
representative (however naturally
not exhausting due to the capacity
reasons of the symposium) overview of
the contemporary engraved glass
– the traditional approach,
experimenting, new trends in
the concept and application of the glass
engraving as a rightful part of the
contemporary creative art including
the conceptual approach with an ovelap
to the field of design, architecture,
multimedia and the studio glass.
The students´ section became an organic
part of the exhibition. Works
by students of secondary schools
and universities were exhibited
together with works by personalities
who are surely classics in the field
and often their teachers.

Besides, the Glass Museum offered
a welcome flashback in the form of
an exhibition of the selection of
the best works from all the symposia
held since 1996. The exhibition was
opened together with the exhibition of
the actual symposium and became a part
of the permanent collection.

Since 1996 Kamenický Šenov has hosted
hundreds of artists and experts
engaged in engraved glass and
glassmaking generally. Engraved
glass itself is a branch not externally
too attractive as the work in
the hot shop processing the hot glass
mass. The concentrated creative
activities of glass engravers can
be at work itself appreciated mainly
by a professional. Thus, it is the
more necessary to appreciate the fact
that even so subtle, on itself focused
and for many people conservative
technique whose home is the at first
sight statically acting workshop
full of whirring engraving machines
was and is repeatedly able to attract
an exhibition of the selection of
the world to the small town in
the north of Bohemia.