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  • Writer's pictureHelen Avaient

Jurien Bay Glass Art and Studio

Catherine Norgett had a niggling thought in the back of her mind since her school days, she had always been interested in glass art. Bored one day, she started to watch youtube videos of glass artists and thought "I can do that". Hence her new hobby was born, and one that led to her opening the Jurien Bay Glass Art and Studio.

"Glass is a wonderful medium to work with. The colour variety and the different textures; the possibilities of what you can do are endless" she said.

In her previous career Catherine was a laboratory technician and the flows of viscosity was something she was familiar with. She undertook a visual arts course at Geraldton TAFE and worked with other artists in Morley art studio and Beach Gecko Glass in Joondalup. Her mentor is Mark Mas. "Glass art is my heart and soul," she stated proudly.

The drip melts, fused and dropped molten glass were astounding. They seem so fragile it is as if they defy gravity.

The biggest sellers are her cheese platters, which are often used as lazy susans.

I asked what her favourite thing is to make and she replied, "Pot melts. They are fired at 900 celcius and you never know what you will get until you open the kiln lid."

Pieces are fired in the kiln for no less than 12 hours and then it takes another 12 hours to get to room temperature, where the kiln can be opened and you can behold your creation.

Catherine likes the social atmosphere of the shop, visited by both locals and tourists.

Not only are these amazing creations available for sale, but she also wanted to offer something to the community and teach new skills and interests to other locals. So she also runs classes.

Walking around and admiring her work, I decided to do a class. As an avid lead lighter I enjoy working with glass. There is no experience needed to do the classes, you can be a total beginner. In fact, it is mainly tourists who attend the classes. We decided to make a flower and a bird. Below on the left are the very beginnings of the flower, next are the cut flower petals. The third picture is my bird starting to take shape.

Catherine also enjoys seeing the faces of people when they pick up their creations. They are both proud and excited of what they have achieved. I was very excited to see my finished products.

As a local Catherine enjoys walking along the nearby beaches and walking her two dogs. One is a Maltaleer, and the other a Maltese. Entering her art next year in the Sculptures by the Sea at Cottesloe will be a great achievement. Always keen to learn something new, she would like to learn to blow glass. Just because she has always wanted to do it.

Maybe in the future she may realise her goal of being a grey nomad and travelling around Australia with her husband, caravan in tow. For now, she is happy to continue creating works of glass art that people adore. The great joy and satisfaction of her chosen career is interacting with customers.

If you are in Jurien Bay Western Australia call in and see the studio (or do a class) at the Jurien Bay Shopping Mall, Unit 4/6 Roberts St. It is only a two hour drive north of Perth and next to a bakery.

Happy Travels!

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