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Spotted 2018 : Interview with Jess Davids


Jess Davids graduated from the Design Crafts course at De Montfort University earlier this year, she specialises in Glass work and is strongly inspired by Sri Lankan eating culture and tuk-tuks. Following her graduation and degree show, we spoke further with Jess about her work and how she plans to move forward with her practice.


Where do you draw inspiration and how does this inform the designs that you make?

For my graduate work, my inspiration comes from travelling around Sri Lanka, specifically the designs within the clear rims come from my abstracted drawings on tuk tuks and they are designed to stack onto each other to reflect the piles of tiles in ceramic factories I encountered.


Tuk Tuks in Sri Lanka


Your work seems very technical and precise, is this difficult to achieve?

The techniques I use in this work are called Incalmo and the two colour pieces are double Incalmo. It is a difficult technique to master and requires precise measurements to allow the different stages to line up to create the crisp line between the colour and the clear. It took a few failed attempts to get going. If the cup of colour and the clear rim are not the same size when joined it will create a blur of colour, which is not visible till near the end of the making process, meaning you’ve put a lot of effort into a piece to find out it will be a second.



Glass plate by Jess Davids


Where do you see yourself this time next year?

Starting in September I will be Artist in Residence at De Montfort university. I hope to develop a new series of work during this time as well as helping to mentor students. I also hope to learn basic workshop maintenance to help me in any future glassblowing assistant job opportunities. At the end of the residency I will be looking at technician jobs in schools or colleges in order to help fund my practice as a glassblower as I am still developing my work.

Which artists inspire you most?

I am majorly inspired by Peter Layton, who I was lucky enough to get some work experience with. I love the intricacy and colours in his work.

I’m also inspired by Louis Thompson, I’m fascinated by his innovative techniques and use of colour.


Glass work by Peter Layton


If you would like to see more of Jess’ work or to find out more, you can visit her Instagram or website.

Thanks for reading! We will be posting more interviews with our spotted graduates in the coming months!