The Colours of Joy

Jill Casty has, during the last ten years, become a supreme master in the art of fused glass and her exhibition at the ‘Bollicine d’autore’ Enoteca, Lucca, has to be a compulsory stop for anyone inside (or even outside) the city walls.


Jill’s style ranges from semi-figurative to Miro-like playfulness and the supports for her work are almost Calder-like in their geometry.

I profess I’m no expert on glass-making and so got a little confused between the great stained glass tradition one can admire, especially in the northern French gothic cathedral and also in Italy (where the apsidal windows in Milan cathedral are unmissable and where one has only to go to Arezzo cathedral to see the magnificent stained glass windows of Guillaume de Marcillat).

Jill Casty creates fused glass. This is a technique where glass is fired in a kiln at various ranges of high temperatures up to over 800 degrees centigrade. I’m not quite sure which techniques of fused glass Jill uses. There are three main ones. Fused, where two pieces of glass are put inside a kiln and heated until they fuse into one piece, slumped where glass is placed over a mould and heated until it drapes over the mould or cast where the glass is melted and flows into a mould.


Since all of these techniques can be used in the creation of one glass work Jill may use all three. The best way to learn and find out would be of course to visit the artist’s studio while she’s at work.

Initially inspired by Mexican folk art with cloth weavings of animals and flowers Jill’s art has developed into an astounding colour-range and three-dimensionality fully exploiting the subtle tonalities and reflections of glass.

It’s particularly appropriate to have Jill’s exhibition in one of Lucca’s most distinguished enoteche. Surrounded by wine of the highest quality why not have a glass yourself while you’re admiring Jill’s art, which is glass sculpture at its best and most exhilarating.

The exhibition is at the Bollicine D’ autore Enoteca at via Calderia N 12 which is the street to the left of San Michele in Foro church and is titled:

Jill Casty, I Colori Della gioia (the colours of joy), Sculture in Vetro (glass sculptures)

The exhibition closes on the 18th of this month. Most items are for sale.

You can find out more about Jill’s art at her web site at





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