Dudley Giberson & Carolyn Rordam
Dudley and Carolyn have been working together since 1994 to solve the many mysteries of ancient glass technology. These include the manufacture of ancient Mesopotamian and Egyptian glass beads and core vessels using the kind of indigenous vertical heating furnace dating from 1500 B.C. Their recent work, which is featured in this exhibit, involves the replication of Roman cast murrini glass bowls. All of this work grew out of Dudley's long-time interest in ancient glass and involved intensive research, discussion with archaeologists, museum curators, and other glassblowers and scholars. Much of this is described in his book A Glassblower's Companion (1998).
Dudley is a self-taught glass artist, designer, inventor, and writer. Within a year of receiving a BFA in Sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1967, he established the Joppa Glassworks in Warner, NH. From 1968 to 1978 he produced blown glass objects and from 1976 to 1998 a line of glass bead jewelry made with various ancient glassmaking techniques. The Giberson Ceramic Burner, which he patented in 1968 and which he manufactures and distributes, is standard equipment in approximately 75% of the small glass shops in the United States. His glass can be found in the Corning Museum of Glass, the Currier Gallery of Art, and the League of N. H. Craftsmen. He teaches and presents glass workshops on a regular basis and has written extensively about various aspects of ancient glass and glass making techniques.
In 1993 Carolyn Rordam joined Dudley as a shop assistant, designer, and bead maker to carry out the production of glass beads and the design of finished jewelry products. She received a BFA in Art Education in 1991, and before and after studied glass at the Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina. Since 1998 she has been shop technician and partner at Joppa Glassworks where her skill in using the ancient glass bead furnace have enabled her to become an expert in ancient glass technology and to develop probable and practical solutions to ancient glass problems.