Get to know Brad Copping Recipient of the 2022 Best of Craft & Design Award
For some new year inspiration we are inviting you to take a closer look at the stunning and breathtaking glassworks of Brad Copping.
Brad is a familiar face and a veteran of the TOAF community, having first exhibited at the Fair in 1993. Over the years, he has entranced our audiences with his explorations and adventures in glass blowing, pushing the boundaries of the medium and perfecting his craft. We are thrilled that his dreamy glass vessels and sculptures have garnered him the coveted Best of Craft & Design Award of $2,000. Our heartfelt thanks to Robert K E Mitchell and Brian H Wade of Mitchell Studios for their generous and continued support of this award.
This month’s curated collection, Intense Tactile, celebrates makers during Toronto’s month of Design. Jeremy Vandermeij, Executive Director of DesignTO, has put together a collection of playful and tactile objects to stimulate your senses.
Meet Brad Copping
Working from his home on the edge of the Canadian Shield, Brad Copping has found muse and foil in this transitional landscape of stone, wood and water, making work that accepts that we are not separate from the natural world. Here he maintains a practice as both sculptor and functional glass blower – often traversing the line between. His studio practice has evolved around attempts to understand our place in a world where the only constant is change. Searching for a dynamic balance, or equilibrium, within the flow of our lives, the work examines how we live with each other and within the physical places in which we find ourselves.
From the award judge
Brad’s sense of form through additive (blown) and subtractive (carved) techniques, and colour, through the hot glassworking process, allows him to sculpt with light. He is internationally renowned for his unique style. The vessels are a part of a larger art practice that has spanned the three decades of this artist’s career. His focus through all approaches from functional vessels to large-scale installations, is water. His work extends to a performative aspect; in 2016, he paddled his mirrored Canadian heritage canoe from GlazenHuis in Belgium to the Dutch National Museum in the Netherlands, filming the light and water effects along the way.
– Lisa A. Pai, Director, L.A. Pai Gallery
Brad on the award
There is always incredible work in a variety of craft mediums at the fair and to be singled out is an honour. The attention this award garners made for some wonderful conversations with new and old visitors during the show and that attention has continued. So great to come out of the past couple of years with the changes to my glass work being recognized. Thank you.
If you could do an artist residency anywhere in the world where would it be?
If I could do an artist residency anywhere in the world I would look to Scandinavia. Nordic design has been an influence in my glass work since I was a student and I know the landscape would be super inspiring.
Where to find Brad’s work
The Art Gallery of Peterborough just launched their first digital publication celebrating an exhibition of Brad’s sculpture. Brad has a few pieces made for Inniskillin Wines showcased in ‘Canadian Modern’, an exhibition at the ROM which is on until the end of July.
Curated by Jeremy Vandermeij
In the Community
Harbourfront Centre Call for Artists-in-Residence
Deadline: March 10, 2023
Craft & Design at Harbourfront Centre is accepting applications for residencies in Ceramics, Glass, Metal/Jewellery, Design and Textiles. Open to recent graduates and emerging artists with equivalent experience, Artists-in-Residence can enjoy access to affordable studio space, receive mentorship, participate in exhibitions and be part of a supportive community.
DesignTO takes over Toronto from January 20 to 29
For all of you design lovers: DesignTO Festival takes place in-person and online, bringing people together to design a better future, one that is more sustainable, just, and joyful.