‘Sweet’ smell of success for glassblower Catherine

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LIFE is sweet for Coleraine glassblower Catherine Keenan as her colourful, intricate collections Eye Candy and Humbugs are gaining critical attention.

With her work on display in Dublin and Belfast, she has just been commissioned by the Dublin Airport Authority to produce seven pieces to be presented to the winners of the Allianz Business to Arts Awards.

Catherine, left, is one of the six designer makers from the making it Programme featured in the new Work in Progress exhibition at Craft NI in Belfast, which launched this year’s August Craft Month with its theme of Made in Northern Ireland. Based at the Flowerfield Arts Centre in Coleraine, she first developed her interest in working with molten glass while at university in Dublin.

“I seek to generate positive emotions with my work, to give solace and uplift. Colour and pattern are so attractive to me as they have a direct way of creating an instinctual response,” Catherine explained.

“Glass has a unique way of affecting light and colour, those qualities combined with a bold use of pattern are my main source of inspiration,” she added.

“This is one of the things I love about working with glass. The process is exciting; you’re working with molten material and you have to work quickly,” she said.

Catherine’s work will be displayed during August Craft Month in the Craft NI Gallery exhibition Work In Progress.

She is also running two workshops at Flowerfield Arts Centre in August. For more information about Catherine’s work or August Craft Month go to www.craftni.org.