Jochen Holz

Jochen Holz is an applied artist and glassblower living and working in the UK. His work ranges from free formed glassware to bespoke objects and lighting projects. By navigating the possibilities and restrictions of the technique and material, the design of his wine glasses explores how far a traditional wine glass shape can be altered and ‘off centred’.

What have you rebelled against in the past, and what are you rebelling against now?
I try to stay clear of small minded, limited thinking and self-centered narcissism, so I rebel in a sense to anything that is too noisy, vane, brash, conventional or consumerist. I am not quite the character to be a good rebel, so I silently stay away from attitudes I don’t like. In terms of my practice as a glassblower it means that I don’t mix a lot with other glass artists/makers, because I experience the glass world often as claustrophobic and aesthetically limiting.

Do you need to be a rebel to enjoy your glasses?
I don’t need to rebel against something outside. Making is more an internal conversation and also a struggle to find what I want or what I feel is successful. But of course to be critical against your own work also means to be critical in general. You then define likes and dislikes and rebel or better reject certain things in favour of others.

Do you think glassware can still be improved? If yes, in what way?
Of course any practice can be improved and craft as something by definition hand made and imperfect demands constant attention and lifelong learning in my view.

What was the inspiration for your Steinbeisser series?
I believe it is important to be conscious of your surroundings and the things you interact with. Objects which are unique and individual demand attention and invite the user to engage. I like when haptic qualities come into this as well. So I made the glasses very wobbly and off centred, which is best experienced when handling one.

Describe your work in 3 words!
Turning hot liquid.

What kind of materials do you use and where do you get them from?
Prefabricated borosilicate glass tubing which I buy in different sizes, wall thicknesses, profiles and colours.

What are you working on right now?
A new group show at Seeds Gallery in London. I am working on a group of clear textured jugs and vases inspired by the idea of creating architectural models and presenting them as a kind of cityscape.  

What excites you about tomorrow?
Nice food, working on my projects, practising yoga 

What has been your favourite dinner experience?
Every time the food is cooked with attention and love.

What further ambitions do you have?
To keep developing my work and to surprise myself.

Which are your 3 favourite pieces on Jouw…?
I like a lot of it but the gesture of the Block Spoon by Stian Korntved Ruud is a favourite, also the Foraged Clay Plates by Jessica Hans are beautiful and understated, and I also love the Clown Bowls by Nick Weddell.