Uta Majmudar Retrospective

This is the second solo exhibition of Uta Majmudar´s work the Glass Museum Immenhausen has presented since 2004. Selected pieces from her far-reaching and impressive body of work can be seen in the retrospective which offers insights into her working methods and ways of thinking. Let´s begin in the year 1978.The Berlinborn former teacher and glass collector had already acquired a considerable group of glass objects.

Pieces from the early days of the Studio Glass Movement can be found in her collection - vases and bowls by Jack Ink, Benny Motzfeld and Volkhard Precht and her selection bears witness to great expertise. But collecting glass
was not enough for her. She wanted to try working with glass herself. When Uta Majmudar was in her early forties, she got the chance to try working at a gas burner and made her
first piece of ‘lamp-worked’ glass. She was fascinated by the possibilities that this brittle material offered. She gave up teaching and became a guest student at the State School for Glass in
Hadamar. This was the beginning of a great period of experimentation. To the chagrin of the staff, her motto was, ‘nothing is impossible’. She tried out new and seemingly impossible things
and was successful. In 1980 she set up her own studio where she experimented at the lamp. She painted several layers of metal oxides onto glass surfaces, pushed glass tubes into each
other, created flashed-glass enveloping glass-fibre fabrics, the surface covered with adhesive foil. She fused fine wire mesh into the glass or blew the glass into a wire support frame. From 1985 to 1988, she studied at the Academy of Applied Art in Aachen and graduated as an applied
art designer. Her voyage of discovery through the world of glass did not stop there. After working with lamp glass she went on to work with thick glass. Individual pieces were painted on the edges, then fused so that the colour appeared as a thin stripe in the glass. For the ‘optical illusion bowls’ (Vexierschalen) she used colourless pure glass rods which she painted along the vertical axis, then laid them alongside one another and fused them. The layer of colour can only be seen when viewed from a certain angle. A fascinating interplay of light and colour is created. Uta Majmudar made a large bowl in 2003 for which she was awarded the State Prize Nordrhein-Westfalen for Applied Art in the category glass. This bowl is a further development of the ‘optical
illusion bowl’ with the difference that a mesh of linked-up copper wire was inlaid into the glass rods which were laid criss-cross over each other. The glass rods enlarge and distort the spun
wire held inside and with every change of viewpoint the viewer catches new glimpses of what is going on inside. Uta Majmudar has also used this technique for flat glass plates on which figures
or calligraphic signs have been painted between the layers of glass rods. She finds the format in which this is possible, too small, however. Uta Majmudar wanted to work on a larger scale and developed a new and very unusual technique for working with the glass rods. Knitted highgrade
steel cords have become her trademark. The thin metal wire is knitted into tubes into which the prepared glass rods are pushed. These moveable tubes are bound together to make large objects, so that it appears as if they are sewn together. Everyday objects such as baskets, cushions, rugs, bags and garments are created and have a special appeal due to the surprising contrast between the material and what is being depicted. The use of dichroic glass which, depending on one´s viewpoint, shimmers in rainbow colours or appears colourless, extends the spectrum of the artist´s work and offers, in connection with the textile knitted steel cording,
the possibility of making spectacular large objects. Uta Majmudar´s work is not only about the fascinating effects of glass. Titles such as ‘Cage-like’ or ‘Our daily bread... fragile’ point to the artist´s concerns with respect to social issues. The realization that not only glass is fragile, but our life too, is a theme which runs through her entire work with glass. In 1998, Uta Majmudar was one of the founding members of the Nordrhein-Westfalen Society of Glass Artists and has contributed to numerous activities, amongst others in the Glass Museum Immenhausen. Since
the year 2000, she has taken part in the Immenhausen Glass Prize competition and exhibition which takes place every three years. Her submission to the 2015 competition demonstrates
her continuing artistic commitment.

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