Originally posted on newzealandglass.blogspot.com on Monday 29 July 2013
I mentioned in my last post the great provenance provided for a recent acquisition by a catalogue from the first Philips Studio Glass Award exhibition in 1984. Here’s a piece of Chuck Simpson’s glass I purchased recently, which also has a great confirmation of its provenance.
This is clearly signed ‘Chuck Simpson’, so there can be no doubt who made it. But Chuck Simpson made glass at Byron Bay in Australia before he came to Inglewood with Lesley Justin in 1987, and he made glass at Eumundi in Queensland after he and Lesley, by then his wife, returned to Australia in 1990. It is typical of glass he made at Inglewood, but it is great to have its New Zealand origin confirmed by the marketing card that came with it.
But that is not the first Inglewood piece to have come with its own marketing card. The piece to the left is signed ‘Glass Art NZ’, a name which seems to have been used both by Chuck and Lesley Simpson and by Andrew Williams, though that is not currently totally clear. All three of them were doing quite similar work, as individually signed pieces by each of them demonstrate.
When I purchased it on TradeMe, it came with a small laminated card, printed on both sides.
The card is delightful for the stylised sketch of the Inglewood church and studio where Tony Kuepfer first set up the studio that he called Glass Plant, subsequently used by Chuck and Lesley and by Andrew.
This photo, taken in Inglewood in October 2012, shows that the church, with the concrete block studio that Tony Kuepfer built, has reverted to its original religious purpose.
The small vase at the right is also signed ‘Glass Art NZ’, but the card that came with it leaves no doubt that this was indeed made by Andrew Williams. The metallic sheen on the card and its slightly crumpled state makes it a little hard to photograph. I wonder who is represented in the drawing?
It is also interesting to see Andrew playing on the history of the Inglewood studio in his marketing. I’m not sure if he was aware of Reg Kempton’s studio at Havelock, but Reg had died by this time, so the claim would seem to me to be correct.