Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Interview with Andy Paiko

I've got a real treat for you today. A few days ago on Ravelry I saw a link for a glass spinning wheel. That's right, you heard me, a Glass Spinning Wheel! I encourage everyone to go see his fabulous wheel.

Man, do I wish I was independently wealthy. This baby would be mine to drool over. Although, I could never really get it. I'd be terrified of hearing an ear-splitting shriek followed by tiny glass shards hitting the floor due to a certain two year old menace that I live with.

But! I was so in awe of Mr. Paiko's work that I just had to beg for an interview and he was gracious enough to grant that request. I had all the questions laid out, but he does such a great job telling his story that I think I will just let him say it his way...


Thanks so much for your interest in my work... I am so happy that the
spinningwheel is being passed around on fiber arts websites and blogs.
I know it is a tight-knit community (HA!... I just made that up, but it's
probably very stale for you).

My wheel is made of over a hundred separate hot-sculpted glass
components, fitted and cold-fused with an archival UV-curing
adhesive and steel hardware. The wood ismexican cocobolo.
The piece can be dismantled for easier transport. With the distaff,
it is 60" tall. It took me about three months of 8-hour days and
many sleepless nights to complete.

To be perfectly honest, I am more interested in the mechanics
of spinning wheels and the metaphors that may be inferred by such
a well-respected craft than the act of spinning wool itself, which
I have only seen done, never done myself. My wheel can be treadled
in a normal and comfortable manner, and fiber which has been threaded
on the bobbin and flyer will certainly take many several twists per inch.

The model and it's proportions are all taken from Eric Corran's book,
"Understanding the Spinning Wheel", pg. 168. It will be on display in
the window of the Portland, OR, Museum of Contemporary Craft this
coming June with an accompanying video of it in use (which I am
editing right now and hope to post on youtube soon). It is for sale at

I saw this quote, right after I finished it, coincidentally, which rather
succinctly sums up the otherwise ambiguous reasons behind my
WEAVING NEW PATTERNS." -August Strindberg, from "A Dream Play",
as interpreted by Ingmar Bergman in "Fanny and Alexander".

I have been making glassware and sculpture from glass since 1994
when I was 17. I have apprenticed several craftsmen over the years, but
have taken very few classes and for the most part, am self-taught. I do
occasionally take commissions if contacted.

Hope this answers your questions... Feel free to post any of it.

Cheers! -Andy

Thanks so much for the interview Andy and I look forward to the video!

UPDATE: Go here to see the video!

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Thank you for sharing this interview.