How can a piece of glass be a piece of art?
How can a piece of glass be a piece of art? Artist Dale Chihuly created the "Mille Fiori" sculpture of glass. At left, a mixture of propane and liquid oxygen combine to heat glass (- AP photos)
How can a piece of glass be a piece of art?
Lexile: 1230L

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A huge grin appears on the face of glass artist Jonathan Michael Davis as he burns hole after hole through spheres of glass, making a popping sound.

Davis, a glassblower by trade, uses a sabre of flame made of liquid oxygen and propane to manipulate glass into elaborate art and sculptures at his studio in rural Chatham County near Pittsboro, North Carolina. The temperature from the torch in Davis' studio rises along with the anticipation of a large glass sculpture in the making.

On a recent day, Davis was preparing a large piece for the Sculpture in the Garden Exhibition at the North Carolina Botanical Garden in Chapel Hill. His work, along with the work of other sculptors across the state, are integrated into the garden's outdoors environment.

"I've never done anything this big or expensive and time consuming before," Davis says of his new sculpture. "I wanted to kind of push myself, at least in my mind. If I put forth as much effort as I possibly can, that's going to be received in some way."

Critical thinking challenge: Why is Michael Davis motivated to push himself?

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  • SH2000Lovie
    9/30/2014 - 08:48 a.m.

    Michael Davis is motivated to push himself because he knows that if he puts in enough effort to the point that he wants to succeed he'll get to an even higher level then he already is in the adult life.

  • Brennand-Lam
    9/30/2014 - 10:49 a.m.

    This is a very cool way of making sculptures. Maybe they could make a glass sculpture museum at Chapel Hill if it catches on and becomes popular. Let's just hope no one throws a baseball toward it and smashes the whole thing!

  • MikaylaStazewski-Ste
    9/30/2014 - 12:46 p.m.

    Honestly, anything is capable of being art. Glass is definitely considered art to me. I mean I did take a stained glass class last year, which was considered an art class. So, yes a piece of glass can be a piece of art, no doubt.

  • NJ2001Game
    9/30/2014 - 12:58 p.m.

    He is motivated to push himself because he wants to know his limits and he wants to see if he learns something new along the way.

  • TaylorHartman-Ste
    9/30/2014 - 01:11 p.m.

    Truthfully, I think the best type of artwork is made from glass sometimes. Glass work is very tricky and difficult and I think to transform it into a work of art is very intriguing.

  • colleenl-Ste
    9/30/2014 - 01:22 p.m.

    I think that this is an amazing way of creating art sculptures. I think its cool the many ways we are finding to create sculptures out of everyday things. I can't wait to see what the next thing is we can make into art.

  • brianfantana
    9/30/2014 - 01:40 p.m.

    Michael Davis is motivated to push himself because if i=he puts enough effort he would be able to be more successful and happier then he is now with how his work is turning out. He also wants to be able to have others be inspired by it or think that it is "cool" or "really good."

  • klai
    10/01/2014 - 10:26 a.m.

    If I ran a museum I would enter this in. I think it's pretty cool. And in the art world I think this would be an abstract. Maybe a sculpture.

  • NashMcComsey-Ste
    10/01/2014 - 11:18 a.m.

    Amazing work, what an artist. Art is more than just brush-to-paper. Art can be made of anything, and a sculptor like this truly shows this through his work. Would love to see more.

  • jaimel01
    10/01/2014 - 01:26 p.m.

    I wish I could do this . I'm pretty sure it took them more than a day . Alot of items too . But something else I am wondering is if they had to polish or put anything on the art to keep it safe .

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