Glass Workshop in Kharkiv
Ukrainian glass workshop started to make so-called "drunk or tipsy glasses," and these glasses became popular among customers
A pair of Ukrainian designers are experimenting with various types of materials. Their bold ideas have brought them worldwide fame. Our correspondent visited their glass workshop to see how they make their magic.
Glass plates are put in a special vacuum chamber. Ukrainian designer Serhiy Fomichev calls the glass-making process quite complicated, but interesting.
“As soon as the pressure is low enough, there will be artificial lightning created between the cathode and the anode. The cathode is made of chemically pure titanium. Titanium will evaporate and all the surfaces will become sterile,” designer Serhiy Fomichev said.
The glass workshop of the Fomichev brothers is a small, but well-known manufacturing enterprise. 30 years ago they usually worked in a room with one pottery wheel for two. Experiments with glass sometimes turned into creating new products. Once the brothers came up with “drunk or tipsy glasses”. The unusual form of the glasses makes them unique. This idea became very popular among customers. Now the “drunk glass” is a brand.
“It’s a recognizable thing and, because they are made in large quantities, many people have them. And often, when I meet a new person they tell me, ‘oh, I happen to have a glass made by you,” Fomichev said.
Exclusive works brought fame to the brothers. One of them is a colorful mosaic made for a hotel in Qatar. The glass panel was created using a special technology — where every piece is unique. Each fragment was drawn by hand. Then, using computer programs they divided it into the required palette and put pieces together. Sometimes the entire department gets involved.
“You just take any fragment and walk around trying to find the best place to put it. It seems that you can put it here, but it does not fit,” designer Daria Andiyenko said.
In the creative workshop, they use any ideas that come to mind and are not afraid to take risks. Once an accidentally broken glass became an art object. Now it is a trademark of the Fomichev brothers.
The designers from Kharkiv are known in Europe and abroad. But the masters are not standing still and keep searching for new original ideas. They hold “Creative Saturdays” to give each workshop member — from designers to cleaners — a chance to prove themselves.