The Eye of Horus.

To celebrate artist Luke Jacomb’s new exhibition we are giving away one of his coveted Lukeke Design Deflated Pendants

In the wake of his father, John Croucher’s, passing in 2021, artist Luke Jacomb returned to the ideas that the two of them had explored in their first collaborative exhibition in 2019 — ‘Alembics and Cucubitas: A New Glass Vernacular’. It was an exploration of alchemy and glass science, themes which Jacomb is now revisiting and weaving into new forms for his latest collection, Mercurio, exhibiting at Masterworks Gallery from this Saturday. The vibrant colours and larger scale of these works not only reflect Jacomb’s emotional journey through the grief of loss, but they speak to his personal growth, too. For the artist, revisiting the alembics is a way to reconnect with his father, see him in every piece, and forge a connection that spans the past, present and future.

Luke Jacomb — Mercurio
Left to right: Chariot of Selene, Helios Rides.

Jacomb created Mercurio’s works in Seattle, the current centre for glass art in North America, where he enlisted the help of fellow glass artist and friend Dan Friday, a Seattle native and member of the Lummi Nation, giving the works an unusual provenance. Seattle holds a special place in the artist’s heart, having lived and worked there as both a production and fine artist, forging lasting friendships along the way.

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Luke Jacomb — Mercurio
Left to right: Courtship of Persephone, Muse of Apollo.

Mercurio takes its name from the Italian word for Mercury, a substance prized for its unusual chemical properties, and the Roman name for Hermes, the patron god of alchemists. With roots in Egypt and Islam, alchemy was grounded in the idea of transmutation — the process of turning base metals into gold and silver. The creation of gold ruby glass for instance (something that can be seen in this exhibition), relied on the discovery of how to dissolve gold using Aqua Regia. For this, tin metal was added to produce Purple of Cassius, a key ingredient in introducing gold into the glass melt and creating a striking ruby colour.

Luke Jacomb — Mercurio
Left to right: The Eye of Horus, Ra’s Nile.

Glass, with its unique combination of fragility and durability, has retained its magical appeal in the modern age. It is a material that permeates every aspect of our lives, from the most petite water glass to the grandest stained-glass windows of Notre Dame. And while the process of creating coloured glasses may be more scientifically viable today than it was several thousand years ago, it remains no less visually arresting and mystical in its ability to enchant us.

Luke Jacomb Lukeke Deflated Pendant
The Lukeke Design Deflated Lamp/Pendant. Photograph for by Sena Akpalu.

In celebration of the new exhibition, showcased at Masterworks Gallery between Saturday the 18th of February and Saturday the 18th of March, we are giving one lucky Denizen the chance to win a coveted Lukeke Design Deflated Lamp/Pendant in the colour of their choosing (as seen here). To enter, simply click here, or enter your details below.

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MERCURIO by Luke Jacomb
Feb 18th to Mar 18th 2023
Masterworks Gallery
71 Upper Queen Street


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