Students learn ancient art

By Amy Decker Reed City Middle School Guidance Counselor

REED CITY — Retired Cadillac High School Art teacher Chris Fisher recently demonstrated the ancient art of creating lampwork beads to Vicky Krantz's art club at Reed City Middle School.

Lampwork beads are created by heating a glass rod to a molten state with the flame of a torch. Individual beads are created by placing a mandrel, a metal rod, into the molten glass and twisting the rod with precise hand movements to form the circular shape. Each student was able to create their own bead with Fisher's expert guidance.

The art of lampwork glass dates back to the 5th century B.C., and was widely practiced by the 14th century in Italy. At this time oil-fueled lamps were used to melt the glass.