Dian Shi

As an artist, I was educated in traditional Chinese culture from childhood. I always was sent to one calligraphy club to study when I was a little girl in the summer holiday. Nowdays science and technology are developing by leaps and bounds, it leads to art form has a huge change. Forming glass artist’s perspectives, using method and principle of traditional Chinese calligraphy, innovative and interdisciplinary of this research recreative a contemporary calligraphy art from applying craft and sciences of material method。


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An investigation into the application of metal oxides in studio glass to form a new model of contemporary glass calligraphy
Dian Shi
University of Sunderland, PhD

Figure 1: Dian Shi, Melodies of life I, Hot glass 2018

This research focuses on the historical and technical contexts of applying metal oxides to form a new model of contemporary Chinese glass calligraphy. It has analysed the current status of contemporary calligraphy in China, and at the same time surveyed examples that relate to glass calligraphy in the research filed of glass art. From transforming traditional calligraphy tools to ink and brush in glass art, this research will analyse the shades of ink expression in works of glass art research, and identify different research perspectives. It also includes the development of personal glass art practice by the researcher, which used glass and metal oxides. This project also focuses on how an artist today might use the techniques of metal oxide with glass to develop contemporary Chinese glass calligraphy art.


Figure 2:Dian Shi, Melodies of life II , hot glass 2018

Chinese calligraphy is a fundamental part of traditional Chinese culture. Using traditional methods and principles; forming innovative and interdisciplinary perspectives, using craft and the science of materials, to recreate a contemporary calligraphy art. The aim is also to develop a new form of Chinese glass calligraphy. This research also forms different aspects, demonstrates the idea of Calligraphy comprehending life. At the same time, a new form of Chinese glass calligraphy will be made that confirms the viewpoint ‘ Chinese calligraphy is life’.





Figure 3 : Dian Shi, Melodies of life II , hot glass, 2018.


Metal oxide is used to melting in glass to get glass colour. Glass artist usually obtain glass colour from glass business company, however some artists are not satisfied with their palette. some artists try to get develop their own palette colour. In glass art reseach field, for example Keith Cumming, Max Stewart, Heike Brachlow and Sylvie VandenHoucke, developed their own colour through using different sorts and amount of metal oxide casting glass, metal oxide be applied in hot glass, lampworking glass did not obtain attention.


Figure 4 : Dian Shi, Melodies of life Hot glass 2018

The metal oxide percentages dictate the tone and colour of the glass and the ink percentage dictate the shade of ink in calligraphy art have similar ways of material quality. This research aims is to develop the art effect of different percentage of metal oxide in glass making. That is similar to Chinese ink, it has the effect of very light, light, dark, very dark, dry. The methods of hot glass, kiln-casting, lamp working and sheet glass will be applied in the process of studio glass practices for this research.