Friday, 25 October 2013

Alx Creations, Slaithwaite (opening soon)

Alx Creations is well on it's way to setting up in Slaithwaite. 
I finally have a business unit to run my workshop from.

Monday, 22 July 2013

A history of casting

London 2013

The V&A - Casting Court 

The Casting Courts at the V&A house an extensive collection of plaster cast and electrotype reproductions of architectural details throughout Europe during the nineteenth century. The collection allowed architects and visitors, who were unable to travel, the opportunity to view and sketch from some of europe's great monuments. Since many of the original works have become damaged or lost, the collection has become invaluable and highly significant in its own right. On a visit to the courts I photographed features to study. 

My Work
The pieces displayed in the court were reminiscent of my own concept, that it is vital to preserve history in more than one format. I believe that casting should play a key role in preserving the history of our civilisation. My own work similarly consists of casts taken from original architectural features, many of which are of historical significance. 

Testing time with 'Fusion Glass'
Working with Fusion Glass in London, I was able to expand my knowledge of kiln forming techniques and experiment with new indirect casting methods. I also experimented with sand carving techniques

New Designers 2013

New Designers 2013

Manchester School of Art

Stand Number CAA36

New Designers is the exhibition for emerging design, showcasing over 3,500 talented new selected graduates. The work I exhibited aimed to reflect  my concept of encapsulating the history of a place through glass. The wall mounted piece is a direct open casting taken from The Corn Exchange in Manchester. The bowls were created to highlight the transition from old to new at the Manchester school of art. 

'A glance through time' - The Corn Exchange - Manchester

- The Corn Exchange - 

'A glance through time'

The Manchester Corn Exchange has a long and fascinating history as the centre of trade in Manchester. Before it was built the area of Hanging Ditch was famous for its markets. The Corn exchange was built to facilitate these and became a new centre of commerce. Over time the need for such an exchange faded and the building stood empty. A new type of market soon began to grow in the building with people holding small stands selling vintage goods, records and crafts. The IRA bombings, however, put a stop to it when the glass dome roof collapsed in. The building was later taken over and restored and its inside turned into a modern shopping precinct. 

Taking a direct casting of the corn 
exchange exterior stone work.

Carved plaster mould taken from the casting. 

Casting memories of The corn exchange.

'A Glance Through Time'


Saturday, 25 May 2013

The Corn Exchange

From 26th July 
'A glance through time' 
 Manchester Corn Exchange 

Three-dimensional designer Alex Blakey recently graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University. Her work uses glass to create ghosts of objects and places, memories and times that have passed.  Her inspiration comes from places and objects that are often overlooked. She finds the stories behind them that would otherwise be left untold and bring them out in her designs. Her work looks beyond the surface, focussing on the beauty deep within and the wealth of secret history.
Her recent work includes a site-specific collaboration with ‘The Corn Exchange’ in Manchester. This involved working with the site to explore the history of the building. She was inspired  by the buildings vast history as a centre for trade. Although the building has gone through many changes its external architecture remain in tact and tells its own story. Her piece, ‘A glance through time’, which is due to be exhibited in the history room at the Corn Exchange from July 26th 2013, is a combination of glass casts taken directly from the building’s architectural features, large scale historical image transfer and sandblasting. Together these three elements document the building’s history.

preview at:

Three Dimensional Design
Manchester Metropolitan University
Degree show 2013

reclaim and climb

Reclaim and climb was a collaborative project with Catrin Grifiths. We wanted to design a range of viable products using reclaimed climbing equipment in collaboration with the group Green Peek Gear. The design process lead us to the creation on a range of 3 products: the caribiner seet, rock hook coat rail and a bracelet.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

reclaiming our history - an investigation into victoria baths

I have been developing work based on the beautiful and historic Victoria Baths in Manchester.  I had been photographing the building on visits for some time but decided I wanted to explore its history further. I took ceramic casts of some of its amazing features which I could then cast in glass. These produced some interesting results including the ghost window of Victoria Baths which you can see below.