Blowing minds: The art of blown glass

Techniques and Innovation Throughout The Years

Though known as a pioneer in his field for a number of reasons, Snodgrass is quite possibly most famous for his accidental discovery of the fuming technique. While working in his shop, a piece of silver happened to come between his torch and the pipe he was working on. Not thinking much of it, Bob went on to sell the pipe. Before long, much to the surprise of both himself and the new owner of the pipe, it had begun to change color where the silver and flame had met. Taking note of the vivid shift of color, Bob headed off back to his workshop to experiment further, his head buzzing with ideas about the possibilities this discovery presented him. He learned he could use different metals to achieve different effects, each one lending the pipe a different and unique color, making his pipes beautiful and striking pieces that quickly garnered much attention with enthusiasts and collectors of glass art. It wasn’t long before everyone wanted one a color changing Snodgrass pipe. Bob’s accident changed an entire art form forever.

After Snodgrass paved the way and Tommy Chong brought mainstream exposure to the world of blown glass pipes and bongs as art, it wasn’t long before artists across the country began to experiment with their work, changing the very fundamentals of the medium forever. No longer were they limited to simple spoon and hammer designs. Instead, a whole word of new, intricate pipes and bongs began to take shape. Artists began putting detail never before imagined into each and every piece. Bongs taking the shape of angler fish with giant, jagged glass teeth. You can order original bongs online in Bong Outlet store. Pipes began to take on otherworldly shapes, evolving from a simple, functional piece into often monstrous or psychedelic works of art, featuring eyeballs and beautiful, sweeping designs.

On the more functional end of the spectrum, the way glass bongs were made began to change into something new entirely during this period. Before they were simple single-chamber glass tubes, often with domed bottoms, that held water in the base. Glass artists began adding second and third chambers, sometimes more, separated by pieces called percolators that further increase the functionality of the bong. Typically coming in designs such as a dome, disc or “tree”, but often branching off into their own unique design, these percolators changed the perception of the glass bong forever and gave artists an entirely new dimension to consider while creating their work.

As a medium, it is still continuing to grow. Each day artists continue to try new things and make discoveries in the realm of glass art that would have been thought impossible just a few short years ago. With each passing of the torch, both literally and figuratively, the art grows. It morphs into something more than anyone ever expected. Snodgrass, nor either of the other innovators that paved the way for such art to exist, couldn’t have seen this coming in a million years. Bongs turned into towering sculptors of glass. Pipes became increasingly unique and exotic in design, to the point that many barely resemble a traditional pipe anymore. One has to wonder if the art and it’s practitioners can continue to push the boundaries and innovate much more than they have, but given the history of blown glass pipes and the artists who make them, I wouldn’t doubt it for a second.